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Stirring speeches from Ranatunga and Sangakkara provide perfect preparation for Karunaratne’s men

Sri Lanka captain Dimuth Karunaratne has revealed inspirational speeches from Kumar Sangakkara and Arjuna Ranatunga provided the perfect preparation for their World Cup campaign.

Karunaratne's men kick-off their campaign against New Zealand in Cardiff on Saturday, with motivational talks from Arjuna Ranatunga and Kumar Sangakkara providing them the inspiration to excel in the tournament.

Sri Lanka enter this edition of World Cup on a terrible run of form, winning only one of their last nine ODIs.

Also Read: Depleted Sri Lanka hope for World Cup miracle

Ranatunga, who captained Sri Lanka to their famous World Cup victory in 1996, and Sangakkara, one of his country's best batsmen ever, spoke to Karunaratne's squad to lift their spirits.

"Sanga came and gave us some words of advice, which was really helpful. He did really well in the last World Cup, so it was useful to hear how he prepared, mentally and everything else," Karunaratne said.

"Arjuna, who lifted the World Cup in 1996, he spoke to us and gave us advice before we left Sri Lanka.

"That is the sort of thing we need to be courageous, past cricketers coming in and helping us. Mahela (Jayawardene) is also here and we hope he will come and talk to us as soon as possible."

Also Read: Sangakkara hopeful Sri Lanka can overcome 'chaotic' build-up to World Cup

Karunaratne added the new faces won’t find it very difficult to adjust on a bigger stage.

"All the other guys who have played in the last couple of years failed to perform for Sri Lanka," Karunaratne said.

"That is why the selectors want to give a new chance to the players who have done well domestically.

"That was the past. We have a good side with fresh faces, and are trying to start again. We are trying to be ready for the World Cup and I think we are."