All hail Ajantha Mendis

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The Asia Cup final is going on right now and Mendis has turned the game on its head. India were coasting at 76/1 after 9 overs. Now, it is 98/5 from 16. Currently, Mendis’ figures read 4-0-8-4. That’s 4 overs, 8 runs, 4 wickets. I’d heard a lot about this 23-year-old gem that Sri Lanka discovered, and finally I got to see him in action today. It seems it was also the first time for the Indian batsmen. Frankly, I’m quite disappointed the way they handled him (it seems they hadn’t done their research on him), but this post is not about India. It’s about Mendis. And what he can do for cricket.

Cricket will be that much more interesting because of him. I can’t wait to see Tendulkar play Mendis. India has some of the finest players of spin (Tendulkar, Dravid, Laxman), and Mendis playing a Test against them is a mouth-watering aspect. Or even the Aussies. I am anxiously looking forward to these contests. They should be thrilling. Looking at the cricket schedule, India is touring Sri Lanka at the end of this month. What good timing. What might have been a drab series, at least to me, now has become very interesting. Let’s hope Tendulkar is fit and back in the Indian team by that time.

For those that haven’t seen Mendis, here’s a short video of the buzz he created when he first joined the Sri Lankan national team to play against the West Indies.

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