HOBART - Sri Lanka captain Angelo Mathews said Wednesday that he has gone down on his knees to beg record-breaking batsman Kumar Sangakkara not to quit after the World Cup.
"I've been on my knees asking Kumar not to retire but we have to respect his wishes because we are thankful for all the times he has represented the country," said Mathews. The skipper added: "The boys played really well and credit should go to Dilshan and Sangakkara, they are getting better and better with age. We have to take one game at a time and play positive cricket. If we can improve our bowling and fielding, it will be great but the batters have posted 300 four times in a row. That is never easy."
Despite his form, Sangakkara, who has played 403 ODIs and made over 14,000 runs, insisted that there will be no going back on his decision. "Retirement is not about form, it is about time and place and whether it feels right. It is never about whether you can play or not," he said. Sri Lanka had already qualified for the quarter-finals and will likely face South Africa in the last eight while Scotland have now lost all five matches. But the Scots made a fight of it with skipper Preston Mommsen (60) and Freddie Coleman (70) putting on 118 for the fourth wicket. "Today was a huge learning experience, especially watching some of the best batsmen in the world. We saw how they kept calm under pressure, so we could learn a lot," said Mommsen.
"Sangakkara is definitely No. 1 in terms of the players we have had to play against."