“You’ve got to look at the quality they have in that side. It’s a side with immense quality. It’s always going to be tough to compete against them, or to try and beat them. They do so many things very well. You see how Virat Kohli runs between the wickets. You see the respect he commands on the field as a leader. He’s a role model to people and he pulls people with him. When you look at the way they go about their work and the culture that Virat has created within that team, it’s very, very impressive,” Pothas, a former South African wicketkeeper batsman told journalists.
“You look at their team and they are very All-Black-like. There’s a lot of respect for the opposition. They are very ruthless in the way they go about their work. Their work-ethic is immense. They are what a lot of teams aspire to be. The most important thing for us is learning from our mistakes, but most importantly, learning from them,” Pothas added.
Pothas was confident that the young Sri Lankan team will learn from the experience. “We’ve got a lot of good players in this team. It’s just a matter of giving them the confidence and the belief that they are very good players and will become world-class players.”
One man with experience is Angelo Mathews, who stepped down from captaincy prior to the series. Mathews played all games in the India series and in 12 innings managed just three half-centuries and none of them were match winning ones.
“It’s very tough on Angie,” said Pothas. “When you’re a senior player, obviously the opposition targets you. Then you have that pressure of being a senior player to perform. It’s very, very tough. Angie is a world-class cricketer and I don’t think you can ever judge any person over a short spate of games. We’re all cliched about it, but form is temporary and Angie is a class cricketer. Outside of being a class cricketer he’s a very, very intelligent man. So he’ll go back, work on it, we’ll have discussions – I have no issues with Angie.”