London, June 9: Sri Lanka captain Angelo Mathews has said the ICC Champions Trophy 2017 match against India yesterday (June 8) was "like playing a World Cup Final".
Sri Lanka defeated India by 7 wickets as they successfully chased down 322 at The Oval stadium on Thursday. Mathews remained unbeaten on 52 to take his team to first victory in the tournament. (Match scorecard)
Be it anywhere in the world, India get lot of support at stadiums. It was no different in the game against Sri Lanka. After the match, Mathews was asked how they managed to stay calm and silence the Indian supporters at The Oval.
For that, he replied, "It was like playing a World Cup Final. It was so noisy and a great atmosphere. We all know that all the Indians travel, and they're right behind their team. I must thank all the Sri Lankan supporters that came out here. Even though it was little numbers, it was fantastic support for us. We really thank all of them."
Mathews, in the post-match press conference, also spoke about Sri Lanka's Papare band. "That's our trademark, Papare. They come all over wherever we play. The Sri Lankan people like to have fun. It was very pleasing for us to give them a win because we had some terrible times in the recent past, especially with losing a lot of lives for floods, and we are very grateful that we could give them a smile," he said.
Sri Lanka next face Pakistan on Monday (June 12). The winner goes through to the semi-finals. On Sunday (June 11), India play against South Africa for a spot in the knockouts.