Sri Lankan Captain Dimuth Karunaratne praises Mickey Arthur, eyes on top four

MUMBAI: Sri Lankan cricket captain Dimuth Karunaratne praised the impact of the new coach Mickey arthur on Sunday and said his team should aim for a place in the top four in the world ranking for both the test format and for those over 50.

South African Mickey arthur was appointed as Sri Lanka's head coach on a two-year contract in December.

Former first-class Cricket player Arthur has been head coach of the national teams in South Africa, Australia and Pakistan.

Mickey is a cool nonsense guy with a lot of experience to back him and his brand up, Karunaratne told Sri Lanka Cricket.

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At the international level, planning and clarity of roles is a norm. What is very important is the belief that he has instilled among us in a proper and subtle way. It sure helped and the results always speak for themselves.

Since Arthur's appointment, Sri Lanka lost a series of two tests in Pakistan before defeating Zimbabwe at home. They currently rank fifth in the format.

The team languishes in eighth place in one-day international matches, but managed to beat a dangerous side of the West Indies 3-0 in their last series before the close of COVID-19.

Classification is the key word. I would say Sri Lanka should be in the top four not only in the ODI Cricket, but also in the tests Cricket Also, said Karunaratne, 32.

That would indirectly mean semi-finalists, to say the least, and maybe you're two games away from the plum. From now on, it is an unknown and if you do it right in your day you could end up being World Champions.

Test captain Karunaratne was himself handed an olive branch to resurrect his limited-overs career and lead the side in ODI Cricket when he was brought back last year ahead of the 50-over World Cup in England for the first time since 2015.

The first-order hitter found success with Willow, but was unable to lead his team in the last four of the competition.

Karunaratne is, however, positive about the future.

"The boys and the respective squads are enjoying their Cricket and that makes my job that much easier," he said.

If you like what you are doing and the environment to do it is conducive, the balance at this sport level becomes much more beneficial.