By Shehan Daniel
Sri Lankan opener Dimuth Karunaratne believes Sri Lanka are in a good position to beat Zimbabwe in the ongoing Test, despite losing three wickets chasing a total of 388, and that a positive attitude will see the home side through to victory.
No team has successfully chased down that amount of runs in a Test in Sri Lanka, with the closest to that being the 382 Pakistan chased down in Pallekele in 2015.
“I believe we can win. Already we've scored 170 for the loss of three wickets. Now that the ball has lost its hardness, they are trying to exploit the rough patches. Angelo (Mathews) and Kusal (Mendis) have settled in and I think tomorrow if they can bat for an hour, an hour and a half they can get in. After that I don’t think it will be easy for them to get the wickets, unless we make a mistake,” Karunaratne said.
He said forcing field changes will also play a crucial part in the chase, adding that trying to merely survive would not help Sri Lanka.
“They are targeting the leg side, so we need to come up with a different plan to force them into field changes. If we do that I think we can get some runs on the board quickly. If we try to survive we won’t win the match and we have to go in with a positive mind to score the 218 runs,” Karunaratne said.
“I think once we get about 60 more runs they’ll spread the field a bit and then we can get those singles, and that will help us get closer to the target. Once we do that we can assess the situation and decide if we want to go for the win or save the match. I think having wickets in hand is going to be important. I think the first session tomorrow will be really important for us.”