Jayawardene lays down challenge to pacemen

GREG BUCKLE
Last updated 09:57 14/12/2012
Clarke, Jaywardene
Getty Images
BATTLE BEGINS: Michael Clarke and Mahela Jaywardene with the Warne/Murali Trophy.

Relevant offers

Cricket

James Anderson tears West Indies apart, steering England to test victory Brendon McCullum, Mitchell McClenaghan fire in Indian Premier League Rahat Ali ruled out injured of Pakistan-Bangladesh test series Fears of breakaway rebel cricket league sparks ICC investigation Mysterious cricket company registrations puts governing bodies on alert Kraigg Brathwaite ton nudges West Indies ahead of England in Grenada test Bangladesh record first T20 win over Pakistan Mitchell Starc dominates for Royal Challengers Bangalore in IPL win over Rajasthan Royals Neil Hood quits as head of Central Districts cricket board Floodlights sought for Hagley Oval within two years in bid to host Black Caps fixtures

Captain Mahela Jayawardene has laid down the challenge to his pacemen to do what no other Sri Lanka side has done and claim a test victory in Australia.

Jayawardene has jumped onto the front foot following the strong criticism from former Aussie quick Rodney Hogg who says Sri Lanka's lineup is the worst new-ball attack ever to visit these shores.

Nuwan Kulasekara, Chanaka Welegedara and three-test seamer Shaminda Eranga have arrived without fanfare in Hobart, with spinner Rangana Herath expected to be the key wicket-taking threat for the touring team in the three-match series.

However with the Hobart pitch looking green and rain forecast for the first four days of the match, both Jayawardene and Australia skipper Michael Clarke will be considering sending the opposition in to bat if the coin toss falls their way.

"This is a sporting wicket from what we've seen in this season, from how the domestic cricket has gone about (with an average score in the first innings of the match of under 100)," Jayawardene says.

"That gives us a fighting chance if we do a lot of things right.

"That's what we need to do against a strong Australian side."

Sri Lanka will be hopeful of getting early wickets just like South Africa did, as Australia lost three cheap wickets in the first innings of each of their three tests in the series which ended earlier this month in Perth.

Jayawardene says his bowling unit has been rebuilt following the retirement of players such as Lasith Malinga.

"Teams have to start somewhere. We have lost some fast bowlers in the past and some due to injuries," Jayawardene said.

"We probably don't have the pace which you think which is required to win test matches in Australia but we've got guys who will bowl good lines and lengths and create opportunities.

"If we keep to that I think we stand a good chance.

"We've got three test matches to play. Once we finish that, I'll have a chat to Rodney Hogg."

Despite the likely seam-friendly and swing-friendly conditions, Australia have retained spinner Nathan Lyon in their side and dumped in-form quick Mitchell Johnson.

"If the rain stays away today it will be a good batting wicket for the first few days and then it might stay a bit low and spin will certainly play a part there," Clarke said.

Ad Feedback

- AAP

Special offers
Opinion poll

Should bouncers be banned from cricket?

Yes - they're too dangerous

Neutral - it is what it is

No - it's just bad luck when it goes wrong

Vote Result

Featured Promotions

Sponsored Content