Chandula Jayakodi will have a tough task

Sp. Sports Corr.
In Kandy

The Sylvestrians have suffered a massive exodus with seven of last year’s palyers having left. Skipper Manoharan Pavitran, Naddera Balasuriya, Pasan Hettiarachchi, Avidu Herath, Husindu Nissanka, Kevin Nimshan and Kanishka Jayasekera have by their departure, left a massive hole in the team.

The task before this year’s captain Chandula Jayakodi is a formidable one. Yet, the bubbly, exuberant skipper is confident that he can turn things round with the players he has. Jayakodi, who made a top score of 131 against Devapathiraja last year, has a triple responsibility. He opens the batting, then takes his turn behind the stumps and all the time he has to have an eye on field placements, bonding changes etcetera.

The vice captaincy is up for grabs at the moment, with Kasun Ediritilleka, Nishantha Indrajith and Mohamed Reza in the running. Indrajith, a pacie took quite a few wickets last season and contributed with the bat. His best was 3-35 against Trinity. Ediritilleka can chip in with the bat in addition to his off breaks.

Charith Rajaguru, who made his debut in 2018/19, is probably their leading all rounder. Rajaguru made a dashing, unbeaten 77 against Maliyadeva which was his best effort. He also rocked St. Mary’s, Kegalle with his medium pace, taking 4-4. Rajaguru captained the under 17 team this year.

The Sylvestrians are stocked with leftarm spinners, having Maleesha de Silva, Isuru Umayanga and Sathsara Navod. For right arm leg spin, the team is well served by Dilanka Tamsha and Kavishka Dilshan. In addition to Ediritilleka, Abishek Kumar, Pasindu Jayakodi and Pasindu Dhiranga complete the list of off spinners.

Navod Rodrigo is one of the pacemen in contention. He is also a useful left hand bat. Kaushalya Bandara, Hashan Ratnayake and Mikdhad Mohamed are the other pacemen who are competing for a place.

Other than the skipper Mohamed Reza a senior player, and Nimsha Wijesinghe can help out behind the stumps.

Apart from a personal milestone of a thousand runs, skipper Jayakodi is targeting four outright wins. He feels the team is a balanced one.

The road ahead is steep, with potentially difficult matches against Nalanda, Thurstan and Mahanama.

There are also matches against Dharmapala, Gurukula, St. Servatius’, St. Anthony’s Wattala and Maliyadeva.

Krishantha Gunawardena, a right hand bat and left arm spinner, who played for the school in the late 1980s and then turned out for Kandy Youth continues as coach.

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