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Monday Dec 16 2019

Sri Lanka's Mathews believes ICC Test Championship has given new life to format

Mathews said that the championship has added value to the cricket format and made it more competitive. Photo:  

Senior Sri Lanka cricketer Angelo Mathews on Monday said he feels the International Cricket Council's (ICC) Test Championship has given new life to Test cricket and made the red-ball contest more interesting.

The 32-year-old all-rounder, who spoke during a media session in Karachi, said the championship has "added value" to the format. 

“The idea of a Test championship has given new life to Test cricket. All teams are after points and each match is important for all teams,” he said.

“We are looking to get all 60 points in Karachi,” said Mathews. 

According to the ICC Test Championship points table, each series accounts for 120 points in total. Two- and three-match series denote 60 and 40 points for each Test match, respectively.

He also appreciated how fans had cheered for the Sri Lankan team in Rawalpindi which, according to Mathews, highlights how grateful Pakistani fans are towards visiting cricketers.

“The atmosphere is great. Unfortunately, in Rawalpindi, we just had two days of cricket — but we saw the passion Pakistani fans have towards cricket.

Read more: 'Bowled more overs, conceded more runs': Yasir Shah on expensive Australia tour

"They very much deserve cricket to be played in Pakistan,” he said.

“We saw them enjoying and even cheering for our team, which shows that they’re very grateful that the Sri Lankan team has travelled to Pakistan,” Mathews added.

The veteran — who has played 83 Tests and 214 ODIs — hoped that the Test in Karachi will provide some good cricket and the contest will produce a result; unlike the Test held in Rawalpindi, which ended as a draw after almost three days were washed out.

“I am sure the Karachi Test will not be affected by rain and [will] possibly be a decisive test. We would like to play good cricket and win against a very strong Pakistani team here,” said the former Sri Lanka captain.

“We are looking to get 60 points. Pakistani is a very balanced team. You can’t single out any individuals — all are good. They’re very strong team,” he added.

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