Sri Lanka head coach Chris Silverwood could throw a spanner in England's T20 World Cup hopes

Bhanuka Rajapaksa downplayed the significance of Sri Lanka head coach Chris Silverwood coming up against former employers England at the T20 World Cup on Saturday but it could still be a factor.

Silverwood oversaw England's run to the semi-finals last year and although he was sacked in February after a heavy Ashes defeat, he was not out of work for long after linking up with Sri Lanka in April.

He will now be plotting England's downfall in Sydney, where Jos Buttler's side must win to finish in the top two of their Super 12s group, but Rajapaksa insisted the Silverwood subplot was no distraction.

Rajapaksa said: "It's just another game for him. He finished his stint in England a couple of months back and he joined Sri Lanka, so now he's our coach. (There is) no pressure riding on the coach."

Under Silverwood, Sri Lanka have drawn a Test series against Australia while they were surprise winners at the Asia Cup in the United Arab Emirates earlier this year, beating Pakistan twice and India once to lift the trophy.

While their semi-final bid was ended after Australia defeated Afghanistan in Adelaide on Friday, big-hitting Sri Lanka batter Rajapaksa feels they are on an upward curve under Silverwood.

Rajapaksa added: "He's one coach that we've been looking forward to his input and the input has been quite straightforward and the clarity is there.

"I mean, it's quite simple with him. There's no limits with him and we've been really pushed hard.

"He just wants us to get better every day. There's so much clarity, he's been great and we'll get better hopefully in the future."

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