Although India's second Test match against Sri Lanka starting in Colombo on Thursday will be dominated by the farewell of Kumar Sangakkara, the Indian team is all focused on the first Test's centurion Dinesh Chandimal, with leg-spinner Amit Mishra vowing not to allow a repeat show by the Sri Lankan batsman.
Chandimal's unbeaten century helped Sri Lanka enforce a turnaround and beat India by 63 runs in the first Test despite the hosts being in the dumps for the major part of the match. "We have seen his videos and we will definitely discuss more about him in the team meeting. We will discuss how to bowl at him (if he tries a similar approach again). Fields will be set accordingly and the idea will be to try and restrict him to playing as few shots as possible and build as much pressure as we can. We will keep attacking him," said Mishra after practice at Colombo's P Sara Oval Stadium on Tuesday.
India have conceded a lot of wickets to spinners on their recent overseas tours. Moeen Ali and Nathan Lyon were two standout spinners against India in England and Australia. They also faced a stern test against Rangana Herath and Tharindu Kaushal in the first Test.
But Mishra said that the Indian batsmen do not lack the skill to play against spin. "I don't think that Indian batsmen struggle against spin, in fact all our batsmen are among the best against spin. Whenever we bowl at them even at nets, it doesn't look like that at all. What happens instead is that sometimes you lose one or two wickets under pressure. Anyone can make mistakes under pressure but I don't think there is any lack of skill against spin," he said.
Mishra also said that despite India's shocking loss at Galle, the team's morale was high. "We should have been more aggressive in our batting in the second innings at Galle and more positive. However, there is nothing lacking in team morale despite the defeat and we are looking to make double the effort in this second Test.
"We are playing Test cricket after a bit of a gap, so we made a few mistakes in Galle. But will work on them and improve. Whatever positives we got from that match, we will take them forward," said Mishra.