Dilshan uncertain about captaincy‎

SHARJAH — Tillakaratne Dilshan said on Monday he would like to continue as Sri Lanka captain for another tour before deciding about his future after losing his third one-day series in a row.

A Shahid Afridi-inspired Pakistan edged out Sri Lanka by 26 runs on Sunday to take an unassailable 3-1 lead in the five-match series. The fifth and final match is in Abu Dhabi on Wednesday.

The 35-year-old Dilshan, who took over as captain after Sri Lanka’s runners-up finish in World Cup in April this year, said he doesn’t know whether he would be retained for next month’s tour of South Africa.

“I don’t know what their (Sri Lankan selectors) views are but I was appointed captain until the South Africa series so I didn’t think (about being sacked) but after the South Africa tour let’s see how it goes from there,” said Dilshan.

Sri Lanka play three Tests and five one-day matches on the tour of South Africa and many believe Dilshan could lose his job.

“As a captain I can’t do anything to change the players’ game. As a team unit we have to take responsibility. As captain I am disappointed to lose and we need to sit down and think where we can start again before the South Africa series,” said Dilshan.

Afridi hit a robust 65-ball 75 to lift Pakistan from a struggling 120-7 to 200 all out before he derailed Sri Lanka from 155-3 to 174 all out, the last seven wickets falling for a mere 19 runs.

The collapse was unbelievable for Dilshan.

“It’s unbelievable to lose seven wickets for 19 runs,” said Dilshan.

“Afridi batted and bowled well, but it was really disappointing to lose from a winning position. We got relaxed and no one took the responsibility. As a batting unit we should have finished the game.”

Dilshan disagreed the captaincy was a burden for him.

“Captaincy is not a burden for me. At the moment our players are performing in one department and not doing well in the other and we are giving chances to youngsters who are not grabbing that opportunity,” said Dilshan.

Sri Lanka also lost the preceding three-Test series 1-0 against Pakistan — the third Test series loss under Dilshan. They also lost to England (Tests and one-day) and Australia (Tests and one-day).

Dilshan hoped his team improves in the fifth and final one-day, to be played in Abu Dhabi on Wednesday.

“I still believe youngsters can do the job. We have to come strong and finish the series on a high. We played good cricket but we did not play to the situation,” said Dilshan.

The teams also play a Twenty20 in Abu Dhabi on Friday. – AFP