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Dhananjaya de Silva aims to normalise winning after Bangladesh Test sweep

Bangladesh vs Sri Lanka. (Source -Getty images)

After Sri Lanka and Bangladesh secured the T20I and ODI series by a margin of 2-1 respectively, all eyes would’ve been on the two-match Test series, with it being the first real Test for Dhananjaya de Silva, who was chosen to lead the Lankan side in the longest format after Dimuth Karunaratne resigned from the post, having already suggested the proposition to Sri Lanka Cricket last year.

Dhananjaya featured as skipper of the Test side for the first time in January, with his side comfortably winning the game despite his horror start with the bat as captain, getting run out on the very first ball he faced. However, the first real assignment was the recently wrapped Test series, both of which were assertively won by Sri Lanka under the leadership of Dhananjaya.

Dhananjaya enjoyed corresponding success with the bat, with him stroking his way to scores of 102 and 108 in both of Sri Lanka’s innings, respectively, earning him the Player of the Match in the Sylhet Test. The second Test in Chattogram wasn’t as glamorous for him, managing an aggregate of just 71 in the entire match, but he managed his troops wonderfully well to script a whitewash in just his second series as the skipper of Sri Lanka’s Test setup. 

Also Read: WTC 2023-25 Points Table: Here’s a look at the latest standings after Sri Lanka’s commendable win against Bangladesh in Chattogram Test

The top three wicket-takers of the series were all Sri Lankan pacers, with Lahiru Kumara, Vishwa Fernando, and Kasun Rajitha ranked first, second, and third respectively. Kamindu Mendis earned the Player of the Series for scoring 367 runs and picking up three wickets throughout the series. Not only that, Dhananjaya’s side managed to stitch an impressive count of six partnerships which lasted for at least 20 overs.

Dhananjaya mentioned that the entire group was content with the series victory, with there being a few aspects on which they could still improve as a team. He stated that he had already debriefed the members of the team as well as the coaching staff, who’ve already embarked on efforts towards that endeavour. He stated that even if there were baby steps taken towards improving everyone’s game every passing day, they could very well foster a custom of winning.

“We are very satisfied with the win. There are many areas for us to improve, and I have talked about those with the team and the coaches are working towards that. If we can learn day by day and raise our game by 1%, we can make winning a habit,” Dhananjaya was quoted as saying by ESPNcricinfo. 

I’d love to play with them for 3-4 years into the future: Dhananjaya 

With the likes of Dimuth Karunaratne, Angelo Mathews, and Dinesh Chandimal gradually but definitely reaching the fag end of their Test careers, it is but obvious for Sri Lanka to compose their team around younger batters going forward. The captain, nonetheless, desires their prolonged presence for a minimum of three to four years owing to their worthwhile contributions during the series, providing invaluable assistance to help him lead the Test side, with them giving valuable inputs from time-to-time, although not enforcing their opinions on Dhananjaya. 

“I don’t know how long they will play. I’d love to play with them for 3-4 years into the future. They have been performing well in the past and they have been great in these series as well. They didn’t interfere with my captaincy. They just give me their ideas. It is very helpful in Tests, because you have to play five days. Sometimes, my mind goes here and there, so getting that advice from them is very valuable,” Dhananjaya added.
Also Read: ‘I didn’t feel that he’s 37’ – Najmul Shanto impressed with Shakib Al Hasan’s fitness after Test return

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