Welcome to the forum andrewn9, I don't think I've seen you post before?
It appears Maruma was selected for his batting alone... he hasn't bowled a single ball in 112 overs in the field.
Let's try and look at the positives.
- Mendis, while taking wickets, was also Sri Lanka's most expensive and least economical bowler
- Masakadza is turning into an imposing
batsman. 26 runs off 34 balls with 2 fours and a six is a good effort
- Chigumbura's 33 off 105 shows that he has the technique to stay out there and grind an innings rather than hitting his way out of a situation
- a lot of the wickets were caught, only Chakabva (inexperience) and Dabengwa (can't bat) had the defense beaten clean bowled. A lot of caughts shows that either the batsmen are playing at balls they shouldn't be (maybe a mindset thing, can be fixed) or trying to hit big (likewise). It's hardly as if Fernando would have been bowling unplayable balls
- only 7 extras conceded from the bowlers
- just 1 wide from Mpofu, who has a tendency to be inaccurate
- no bowler has taken an absolute hammering
- Shingirai Masakadza on debut (of sorts) is the most economical bowler
- Neither Utseya or Cremer are as expensive as Jason Krezja
It would be nice to have more guys bowling in the 2.5 - 3.5 economy bracket rather than the 3.5 - 4.0 economy bracket, but at least our main bowlers aren't going for 5 or 6 an over. If Ray Price was bowling, and probably Tawanda Mupariwa as well, Sri Lanka would probably have about 50 runs less than what they do.
Obviously our batting let us down quite a bit. We needed someone to at least score 60 or 70 or else we had no hope of getting a respectable total. The next innings should have a focus on building a massive score. We can't win, so I'd like to see the batsmen try and bat out the rest of the match. Even if it means a run rate of 1-2 an over, show the rest of the world that we can keep wickets in hand. We need a "wall" like Rahul Dravid (well, the Dravid of a few years ago
). We have to accept that we don't have the man power to even come close to winning, but why couldn't we draw a game? Bat through 150-180 overs overs (easier said than done though) and get 300 odd - it's a score, and hey it might even cause the opposition to make a sporting declaration in the hope of a result.
For day 3, the bowlers need to focus on doing the basics. I would get Chigumbura and Mpofu on at the beginning of the day (for a few overs) and let them bowl some short stuff. At 130-135 they are not all that quick, but Shane Watson is of a similar speed and caught some of the batsmen in India off guard by bowling short of a length. Cremer and Utseya in tandem seem to be restricting the runs a bit more than Chigumbura and Mpofu, so hopefully they can continue what they are doing. It would be great if Cremer could snare a few wickets.