The Indian team have looked almost invincible in the home conditions. Virat Kohli and Co. had handsomely beaten Sri Lanka in their own backyard four months ago. The former legendary Sri Lankan spinner Muttiah Muralitharan believes that his team’s chances are slim against the Indian juggernauts who are on the roll.
The visitors haven’t been able to play to their potential in 2017 and it is going to be another challenging series for them against a top side. Moreover, Sri Lanka team have never been able to win a Test match in India despite having a better side than the current one. The Indian team are currently perched at the top of the Test rankings and they are playing like the best team in the world.
Sri Lankan players’ characters would be tested.
Things are not expected to be easy for the tourist’s side and one believes that they would have to play out of their skin to make India sweat. There is no doubt that the Indian team is a potent force at home and not many teams have savoured wins here.
Muralitharan said while talking to Cricbuzz, “Our chances of winning a Test match in India, I would say, are slim. All teams have struggled to compete in India. In the last 13 years, only two teams have won a series in India. They are ranked number one in the world at the moment, our Test cricket seems to be doing okay, but we are struggling in shorter formats of the game. This will be a tough series and the characters of our boys will be tested”.
Batting force of the Indian team has always been powerful.
Muralitharan added that the Indian team had a stronger batting line-up in his playing days as likened to the one they possess now. The likes of Sehwag, Gambhir, Dravid, Sachin, Laxman, Ganguly and Dhoni will give any side many nightmares.
Murali added, “When I played against India, they had the world’s best batting line-up. Their batting was stronger than now I would say. If you take that batting line-up, they had [Virender] Sehwag, [Gautam] Gambhir, [Rahul] Dravid, [Sachin] Tendulkar, [Sourav] Ganguly, [VVS] Laxman and [MS] Dhoni batting from one to seven. Some of them are all-time greats of the sport and it was a tough task for us”.
The Sri Lankan has had its share of dominance over the Indian team and they also were a team to beat in their home conditions. India was able to beat Sri Lanka in latter’s home soil after more than two decades.
The proud owner of 800 Test victims added, “Similarly, we too were quite strong at home. Despite such a good side, India failed to win a series in Sri Lanka for some 22 years. We have some happy memories having made things tougher for them. It has been a superb rivalry and some closely contested games. That’s what the sport wants. There were some series where all games were drawn. In 1997, we played five Tests, two at home and three away and all games were drawn. Both teams had some quality batsmen”.
It is going to be a daunting task for Sri Lanka to shake India. It is understandable that the visitors will have to bring their A game and they should be on their toes if they want to turn the tables. The first Test of the three-match series will commence from 16 November at Eden Gardens in Kolkata.