Tag: Mahela Jayawardene

Mahela Jayawardene v England

As abysmal as England’s batsmen have been, the team would stand a pretty decent chance of beating Sri Lanka if they didn’t spend most of their time in the field attempting to dismiss just one of the two batsmen at the crease.

If they’re in Sri Lanka, England are probably bowling to Mahela Jayawardene. In 11 Tests against them, he’s made six hundreds (one a double) and five fifties. He averages 90, but more importantly, he gives off an unmistakeable air of knowing precisely what the hell he is doing.

It’s impossible to ask questions of someone who knows what they’re doing. Peering into your car engine alongside a mechanic, you can’t say: “What’s that wiggly thing?” or “Which bit makes it go?”

Asking questions exposes your own limitations. It’s better keep a low profile and hope no-one exposes you for the worthless human being you know yourself to be.


Mahela Jayawardene does not get bored

Mahela Jayawardene wonders where the afternoon session wentAfter Mahela Jayawardene recorded his sixth Test double hundred, it was tempting to wonder whether he ever gets bored.

We get bored very, very easily. We get bored midway through unlocking our front door and that takes less than five seconds. The only exception to this is rail travel, where we’ve perfected a certain frame of mind that’s not unlike a waking death.

That sounds horrific, but all we actually mean is that all brain activity effectively ceases. We once travelled from Istanbul to Venice via trains and boats without stopping for a night’s sleep. The alarming part is that we didn’t read or sleep or do anything. We basically just sat there, staring at the seat directly in front of us for hour after hour.

We reckon that Mahela Jayawardene can adopt this frame of mind while being staggeringly adept at batting at the same time.


Thilan Samaraweera averages WAY more than 40

Got a mate called Sam? Call them Samaraweera for shortEngland’s batsmen are very fond of telling anyone who’ll listen how they all average over 40, like it’s a benchmark for greatness. Maybe it was 10 years ago, but not now.

Take Thilan Samaraweera for example. Here’s a very decent Test batsman, but by no means a great. In the Sri Lanka team, he probably takes third billing after Mahela Jayawardene and Kumar Sangakkara. After welcoming Pakistan back to Test cricket with 231, he now averages 48.11 in Tests. If any of England’s batsmen other than KP averaged that, they’d instantly get complacent and return to the pack.

Samaraweera didn’t top score for Sri Lanka. Mahela Jayawardene, in his last series as captain, hit 240. Jayawardene’s so good that isn’t even news. 240 is only his third highest score.


It’s Mahela Jayawardene at the SSC. Again.

I stay out here because the changing rooms smell funnyIf Sanath Jayasuriya’s catchphrase would be ‘ha-haaaa‘, then Mahela Jayawardene’s ought to be just silence. He’s not speaking because he’s concentrating.

Jayawardene averages near enough a hundred at Galle, but it’s at the Sinhalese Sports Club Ground that he REALLY likes batting. No-one’s ever scored more Test runs at a single ground than Jayawardene at the SSC.

The last four times he’s gone to the crease in a Test match there, he’s scored a hundred. The first of those innings was 374 and the most recent, yesterday, was his ninth SSC Test hundred.

It must be really satisfying for the Sri Lankans when they’re playing at home to have a tactic that they can rely on so completely. Bat the opposition to tears, hope to fluke a wicket with the new ball and then let Murali bowl for three days solid.

As plans go, it’s not got much subtlety, but granite hasn’t got much subtlety and granite’s one of the great success stories. Look at it sitting there – the smug, igneous bastard.


Mahela Jayawardene not mad keen on getting out

'Declare? No, I'm afraid that won't be happening'Prior to this match there was a bit of discussion as to whether it was best to bat first or second. It tends to be a brave move to insert the opposition upon winning the toss, but The Sinhalese Sports Club Ground in Columbo has something of a reputation for flattening out after early life.

Perhaps the best example of this was August 2006. South Africa won the toss and opted to bat. They were bundled out for 169, reduced Sri Lanka to 14-2 and then watched Mahela Jayawardene and Kumar Sangakkara put on the highest first-class partnership of all time, never mind just in Tests. Sangakkara hit a mere 287, Jayawardene a fairly robust 374.

England were lucky enough to get Sangakkara for one yesterday, but Mahela Jayawardene’s still at the crease. This guy doesn’t have the first clue as to how to get out at this ground. It’s totally alien to him. This was his eighth Test hundred here.

We tend to groan when we hear that a team’s decided whether to bat or bowl based on past matches at a ground. It’s usually something like: ‘Historically, 25 runs more are scored batting first,’ or something similarly inconsequential. We always feel like this gets the players in the wrong frame of mind.

If you’re running into bowl, thinking ‘this is a 600 pitch’, you might not be quite so enthusiastic as normal. Similarly, if a pitch has a reputation for being difficult to bat on on the last day, bowlers will be fighting for the ball and giving it their all.

Sometimes you need to make your own history.

Having said that, we’d forgive anyone for feeling a little glum at the prospect of bowling at Mahela Jayawardene on the third day at The Sinhalese Sports Club Ground.

Sri Lanka v England, second Test at Columbo – day three
England 351 all out (Michael Vaughan 87, Alastair Cook 81, Matt Prior 79, Muttiah Muralitharan 5-116, Lasith Malinga 3-78)
Sri Lanka 379-4 (Mahela Jayawardene 167 not out, Michael Vandort 138, Ryan Sidebottom 3-72)


How to get Mahela Jayawardene out

Strangely balletic - far too much dignity retainedHave a tantrum.

That’s what we’d do. Have a real, world-class, multi-award winning, all-time-hall-of-fame hissy fit. A proper toy-flinging, teary-eyed shamefest.

The key is to act so insufferably badly that Jayawardene can’t look at you for embarrassment. You want to make him think: ‘This is intolerable. I literally can’t bear another second watching this happen.’

Subconsciously he’ll be keen to get out. It’ll be a relief for him.


Derbyshire sign Mahela Jayawardene as well

It's Mahela - everyone likes MahelaWhat’s going on? Derbyshire are getting serious.

Their latest signing is none other than Mahela Jayawardene – only one of the finest batsmen in the world. Jayawardene will also be playing alongside four other top drawer new signings for Derbyshire: Wavell Hinds of the Windies, who doesn’t count as an overseas player; Rikki Clarke, who’s signed as the new captain; Nayan Doshi, the world’s leading Twenty20 wicket-taker; and John Sadler, Mr and Mrs Sadler’s son.

Okay, three top drawer signings and John Sadler. John Sadler will probably score 2,000 runs for Derbyshire next season now. We won’t notice though because his name’s not very memorable. We suggest he changes it to the Sadlinator 9,000 or somesuch.


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