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Washed out series hampers Lanka's WC preparations

Sri Lanka cricket (SLC) would regret at least two aspects of the washed out three-Test series against West Indies.

cricket Updated: Dec 06, 2010 17:12 IST
Sutirtho Patranobis
Sutirtho Patranobis
Hindustan Times
Colombo

Sri Lanka cricket (SLC) would regret at least two aspects of the washed out three-Test series against West Indies. One, the incessant rains left its World Cup preparations in tatters as SLC officials are now playing against time to complete the renovation of the R Premadasa stadium in Colombo and construction of Pallekele stadium in Kandy (the venue for the third Test) and the Mahinda Rajapaksa Stadium in Hambantota before the International Cricket Counil's December 31 deadline.

Secondly, because the series was drawn, Sri Lanka slipped two positions in Test rankings and is now fifth among the Test playing nations.

The series did not have a single full day of cricket, since the first day during the Test match in Galle with only 641.5 overs being bowled of a possible 1,350 overs throughout the series.

Importantly, the final Test at the new Pallekele stadium suffered the most losing 103 overs of the statutory minimum of 450 possible in a match. The ground was covered nearly all through the match and cricketers and officials could not get a clear feel of either the pitch or the outfield.

"Ironically, the series burial took place at a ground that was born and christened as the world's 104th venue only four days ago," the Daily Mirror wrote on Monday.

Questions are now also being raised over the decision of holding Test matches at a time of the year when it rains in many parts of Sri Lanka. "It's like England trying to stage matches during the winter snowfall," a former cricketer was quoted by Daily Mirror as having said.

Kumar Sangakkara, the Sri Lanka captain, described the rain-hit, three-Test series as probably the worst of his life.

"I've never seen anything like this before," Sangakkara was quoted in newspapers as saying.
"It was pretty frustrating to sit in the dressing room and watch the rain," Sangakkara said, calling for cricket officials to analyze weather patterns properly before hosting Test matches.