Dinesh Chandimal has stated that the ‘less grassy’ Nagpur pitch will help his side as it will support the batsmen for the first few days before the spinners become vital. He also hopes that the experienced Rangana Herath shows what he is capable of in Nagpur after a disappointing display in Kolkata.
The Sri Lankan pacers picked up 15 out of the 18 wickets on an uncharacteristically green wicket in Kolkata putting India in a heap of trouble. However, their batsmen apart from Angelo Matthews, Lahiru Thirimanne, and Rangana Herath failed to impose themselves on the game, the visitors managed to escape a defeat by the closest of margins. After the fast, swinging Eden Garden track rendered the spinners ineffective and batsmen helpless during the first Test, Chandimal hopes that the VCA stadium strip, which didn’t seem as grassy compared to the Kolkata one, would come in handy for his team.
“There isn't much grass like Kolkata. We saw so much of grass (covering on the pitch) at the Eden Gardens. This looks much lesser compared to Kolkata. This looks like a good Test pitch. It's a challenge for us as a team. We are looking
Rangana Herath, who was the biggest weapon in Sri Lanka’s cannon against Pakistan in UAE in their last Test series, didn’t get a single wicket in the first Test. But he wasn't the only one who struggled with the conditions that Kolkata had to offer. Apart from Dilruwan Perera, spinners from both teams failed to register a single entry in the wickets column. However, Chandimal believes that the 39-year-old will have a profound impact on the game in Nagpur.
“Rangana Herath is a wily old fox. On this wicket, he can be handy. On a green top at the Eden, he wasn't as effective," Chandimal said.
Sri Lanka is definitely a different looking side this time compared to the last time these two sides faced each other in July earlier this year when India simply overran them in all formats of the game. Chandimal believes it is an attitude change on their part has made all the difference for their side.
“We learned a lot from the last Indian series in Sri Lanka. The most important thing is we came here to win the series. Our attitude has changed. Our fielding also has made a huge difference. There is a lot of energy,” said Chandimal.