Moody: We can win it

Tom Moody is optimistic of Sri Lanka’s chances in the Champions’ Trophy, even though they will have to go through qualifying.

Sri Lanka have to face off with holders West Indies, Bangladesh and Zimbabwe to qualify for the tournament, because they were ranked seventh at the cut-off point in April.

The fact that they have to qualify now seems somewhat ludicrous given that they whitewashed England, who go straight into the tournament, in England, but their performances on that tour have given the Sri Lankans a renewed sense of optimism ahead of the forthcoming tournament.

Mahela Jayawardene will skipper Sr Lanka in India, despite the return of Marvan Atapattu, who missed the England tour, and South Africa series, after having back surgery.

Jayawardene belives that Atapattu gives Sri Lanka more batting options, “Marvan is an opening batsman who can even play down the order like in Australia, where he batted at number five. We haven’t actually come to a final decision on that. We may even open with Marvan and get one of the top-order guys to bat at number three.”

Moody said of Sri Lanka’s chances, “We are a good side now in all three departments of the game,” and went on to add, “We have set a goal to be the best fielding side in World Cup 2007 and are well on our way to achieving that.”

Sri Lanka will be expected to qualify, and if they repeat the form they displayed on English soil in more familiar conditions then they could well go far, whether they go as far as Moody belives they will, however, remains to be seen.

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