The 2011 Cricket World Cup has been the talking point for all the wrong reasons recently, with questions being raised if Sri Lanka fixed the result. Former skipper Angelo Mathews believes that the main reason for the defeat was that Sri Lanka fell 20-30 runs short after batting first.
After Sri Lanka won the toss and elected to bat first, Mahela Jayawardene’s 88-ball 103 powered his team to 274/6. In reply, Gautam Gambhir’s 97 and Indian skipper MS Dhoni’s unbeaten 91 powered India to their second World Cup title after 18 years, with a six wicket win.
“That was my first 50-overs World Cup as I played in the World T20 in 2009 and 2010. 2011 was a special one, especially because we were playing in our own conditions. We played some great cricket en route to the finals, and even in the final. Unfortunately, I got injured and that’s one of my disappointing moments as I was looking forward to playing the final after winning the semi-final,” Angelo Mathews told Anis Sajan on his Youtube chat show Cricket Unplugged.
Angelo Mathews featured in all matches in the 2011 World Cup. apart from the final. The all-rounder had played a crucial role in Sri Lanka’s win over New Zealand in the semi-final.
However, a quadriceps muscle injury forced Angelo Mathews to miss the title clash.
“I couldn’t even walk for two weeks after the quadriceps muscle injury as it was painful. The doctors also ruled out my chances of me playing. But I was thankful that I was taken with the squad to India to see if I can play, but it didn’t happen,” former Sri Lanka captain Angelo Mathews added.
Angelo Mathews has a sensational record in international cricket
Angelo Mathews has turned out in 86 Tests, 217 ODIs and 75 T20s till date for Sri Lanka. He averages an impressive 45.31 with the bat in Test cricket and 41.94 in ODIs.
“I still feel that if we had gotten about 320, we could’ve given a good fight even against India’s strong batting line-up. Indian wickets are flat as roads and when a batsman gets going, it can be really tough to stop him. India had a gun batting lineup as well. Wankhede is not a massive stadium, but the ball stays hit when you hit it and the pitch was also good,” Angelo Mathews recalled.
Angelo Mathews also felt that Sri Lanka had their chances but Gautam Gambhir and Virat Kohli batted well before MS Dhoni finished them off.
“We were short by about 20 to 30 runs. We had our chances, but Gautam (Gambhir) and Virat (Kohli) batted really well. Then, MS Dhoni joined them and finished it off. All in all, it was a good game,” Angelo Mathews added.