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Batting collapses have cost Sri Lanka at the World Cup - Karunaratne

Batting collapses have cost Sri Lanka at the World Cup - Karunaratne
Cricket - ICC Cricket World Cup - Sri Lanka Press Conference - Emerald Headingley, Headingley, Britain - June 20, 2019 Sri Lanka's Dimuth Karunaratne during the press conference Action Images via Reuters/Lee Smith -
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LEE SMITH(Reuters)
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(Reuters) – Sri Lanka have been let down by their batting line-up at the Cricket World Cup and must perform together as a unit if they are to have a shot at qualifying for the semi-finals, their skipper Dimuth Karunaratne said on Sunday.

Sri Lanka are seventh in the standings — three points behind fourth-placed Pakistan — and have an outside chance of qualifying for the semi-finals by finishing in the top four if they win their remaining two games.

The 1996 champions have been bowled out four times so far at the tournament and Karunaratne said their inability to kick on after batsmen made promising starts had cost them against the big sides.

“I think the batting is the main collapse,” Karunaratne told reporters ahead of Monday’s match against West Indies. “We played like five matches, we couldn’t get a hundred, only a couple of fifties in our team. That is the only major thing.

“If you want to compete with the good sides, you definitely got to have a good batting line-up and you have to put runs on the board. So I think in this World Cup, the major (problem) is the batting line-up.

“They have capabilities to score runs. They were scoring but as a unit we couldn’t perform really well in these matches. Everyone has to put their hands up, put their heads down and put some runs on the board if you want to really win the matches.”

Sri Lanka’s fate is not solely in their hands, however, with their hopes of qualifying for the semi-finals resting on how England and Bangladesh, above them in the standings, fare in their remaining games.

“We can’t control the other games,” Karunaratne added. “I think we have a good chance but we have to win these two games and wait for… what will happen in the other games.

“We can only control the matches we are going to play, the two matches. We are trying to give our best and try to win these two matches and hopefully if we have a chance, we definitely can be (among) the top four teams.”

(Reporting by Rohith Nair in Bengaluru; editing by Clare Fallon)

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