Happy to achieve my goal: Herath

Happy to achieve my goal: Herath

“This tour is a great opportunity for me because the Indian batsmen are good against spin,” added the left-arm spinner. “I am really happy to get five wickets. Today’s performance is all the more satisfying because we got their last eight wickets for some 250 runs. The wicket is slow and low and I thought it was a good effort.”

Like the more famous Ajantha Mendis, Herath too has a mean carrom ball, delivered with a flick of the middle finger. “I have done well with the carrom ball but Ajantha did better than me,” conceded Herath.

“I started with the carrom ball when I was 15, and it has worked well for me.
“Today, I got three wickets from the delivery that goes the other way. I had to mix up my deliveries on a wicket where it’s easy to bat.”

Herath was flown down to Sri Lanka for the Test series against Pakistan earlier this year after Muttiah Muralitharan picked up an injury. He hasn’t looked back since. “There’s nothing special I have done. I have been playing since 1999 and over the years, I have gained a lot of experience that has certainly come in handy. There’s has been lot of assistance for me from the coaching and management staff. I believe in myself a hundred percent. Whether you bowl, bat or field, you have to give 100 percent all the time, and I back myself.”

Herath said he had interacted with New Zealand skipper Daniel Vettori, himself a no mean left-arm spinner, when the Kiwis had toured Sri Lanka earlier this year. “He’s one of my favourite bowlers,” Herath observed. “There was nothing special that I asked him, but I was interested in knowing how he could summon such concentration. That chat was good, I picked up a lot of useful things.”

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