Apr 03, Colombo: Sri Lanka today with pageantry welcomed its Runner-Up World Cup cricket team returned from the final held in Mumbai, India yesterday.
The team, arrived in a special SriLankan flight this morning at the Bandaranaike International Airport in Katunayake, was given a red-carpet welcome at the airport. Senior officials led by Ministers and Parliamentarians gathered at the airport to welcome them and the players were blessed with the religious observances.
The team was then taken in a special motorcade to a ceremony at the Independence Square in Colombo where the cricketers were ushered to the Square in a traditional parade complete with dancers, drummers, and elephants as people thronged to wish them success for the next World Cup 2015.
The team led by Captain Kumar Sangakkara lost the final to India despite scoring a formidable score of 275 with an unbeaten 103 from the Vice Captain Mahela Jayawardena.
The skipper at the press conference following the celebrations admitted that mistakes were made during bowling and their bowling effort was not strong to beat the Indian team playing with the home advantage.
Sri Lanka’s legendary spinner Muttiah Muralitharan who played his last international match said failure of himself and Suraj Randiv proved a turning point in the defeat to India.
Meanwhile, the sensational pacer Lasith Malinga has announced that he will not be a part of the next World Cup team in 2015 as he is prone to injuries.
“I hope to be of service to my team as long as I can, but I won’t be able to play in the next World Cup in 2015. I have been carrying injuries for the past few weeks and with little rest,” the 27-year-old told state-run TV.
Malinga took the crucial wickets of Indian openers Sachin Tendulkar and Virender Sehwag and deprived Tendulkar of his 100th century. However, he did not receive much support from the rest of Sri Lanka’s bowling team.