Gulf Today

Sri Lanka coach says spat with captain was ‘good debate’


COLOMBO: Sri Lanka coach Mickey Arthur on Wednesday brushed off suggestion­s that he berated skipper Dasun Shanaka in front of cameras after they lost a one-day series to India.

India passed Sri Lanka’s 275-9 with five balls to spare in Colombo on Tuesday to record a victory that gave them a 2-0 lead in the three-game series.

Sri Lanka’s South African coach was seen sharing heated words with Shanaka and gesturing at the captain on the field ater the game they lost by three wickets.

Arthur coached the South Africa from 2005 to 2010, was the coach of the Australia from 2010 until his sacking in June 2013 (then to be replaced by Darren Lehmann) and was the coach of the Pakistan from 2016 to 2019.

He appeared to indicate that Shanaka should go with him off the field but the captain did not budge while Arthur walked away, in a video widely shared on social media.

“It was actually a very good debate, no need to make mischief out of it,” Arthur said on Twitter responding to match commentato­r Russel Arnold’s comment that the exchange should have been held in the dressing room.

Sri Lanka went into the series with injuries and without bating coach Grant Flower who tested positive for Covid-19 on his return with the team from a tour of England where they lost both the ODI and Twenty20 series.

Top scorer Charith Asalanka, who made 65, said Sri Lanka thought they had won the game, but India’s lower order fought back.

From 193-7, Deepak Chahar and Bhuvneshwa­r Kumar put on an unbeaten stand of 84 for the eighth wicket to secure India’s win.

“We thought we put up a good total (of 275), but we lost the plot along the way,” Asalanka said.

Sri Lanka’s young team was emotional ater losing the series, he said. The final ODI is on Friday and the three-match T20 series begins on Sunday.

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