Chaminda Vaas may have put on Irish colours in his role of a bowling consultant for the European team, but his heart still beats for Sri Lanka, which is going through a lean phase at the moment, The Hindu reported.
The 42-year-old — who served Sri Lanka with distinction for 15 years capturing more than 750 international wickets and was part of the best phase of the country’s cricketing journey including the 1996 World Cup win — was pained to see his national side’s slump following the retirement of stalwarts such as Mahela Jayawardene and Kumar Sangakkara.
“Sri Lanka is not doing well but the team will bounce back. I have seen Sri Lankan cricket for many years, it always bounces back,” said Vaas following a nets session of the Ireland team at the HPCA Stadium in India.
Vaas’s firm assertion was because of the depth in the Sri Lankan squad, including players like Angelo Mathews, Tillakaratne Dilshan, Dinesh Chandimal, Thisara Perera, Rangana Herath and Dusmantha Chameera. “They have quality players and I hope they will do well in the World T20,” said Vaas.
Sri Lanka will start its campaign in the World T20 against a qualifier in Kolkata on March 17.
Vaas, nevertheless, is focused on the Irish side, which is currently playing the World T20 qualifiers.
“There are so many strategies and varieties as far as the bowlers are concerned. The guys are professional, they play county cricket.
“So you have to work on variation and specific skill. The attack is well-balanced. They have played T20 matches and have got the experience.”
Known for winning battles against batsmen by mixing his skill with guile, Vaas said T20 cricket had made the bowlers better.
“Cricket itself is a batters game but the bowlers are learning. When T20 cricket came, everybody thought there would be no mercy for bowlers but bowlers are doing well. It is a good contest between bat and ball,” said the Sri Lankan great.