Angelo Mathews blasts Sri Lanka cricket for ‘decisions driven by agendas’ after T20I comeback

Written by N Krishnamurthy

All-rounder Angelo Mathews blamed Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) for their ‘decisions driven by agendas’ after he made his T20I comeback following a gap of nearly 3 years.

The 36-year-old Mathews said that despite performing well at the domestic level, he was ignored for the T20 World Cup in 2021 and 2022.

“In the last two Lanka Premier League (LPL) seasons I batted and bowled well, but unfortunately I wasn’t selected for the T20 World Cups, and I wasn’t given reasons for that,” Matthews was quoted as saying in the press conference after the first T20I between Sri Lanka and Zimbabwe at the R Premadasa Stadium in Colombo.

“If you take decisions that are driven by agendas, these kinds of things can happen – we haven’t even qualified for the Champions Trophy,” he stated.

Mathews said that despite not getting opportunities in the T20 format, he did let his spirit die down.

“But one thing I believe is that if you train and play wholeheartedly, you can create an environment for yourself where you can perform. I kept my efforts up over the last couple of years. I think I can play for a little while longer,” Mathews added.

On Sunday, Mathews played a critical role for his team as the hosts took a 1-0 lead in the 3-match series. The veteran was economical after he finished with figures of 2-0-13-0. Thereafter, he scored 46 runs off 38 balls with 5 fours and 1 six, helping Sri Lanka chase down 144.

The 2nd T20I is scheduled to take place on Tuesday, January 16 with a chance for Sri Lanka to claim the series.

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N Krishnamurthy