Connect with us


Need to get the right combination



Sri Lanka lost the first ODI against Bangladesh by 33 runs. The second ODI will be played today in Dhaka followed by the final game on Friday. 


by Rex Clementine


Sri Lanka are languishing at 12th in the ICC Cricket World Cup Super League with minus two points and at this moment automatic qualification looks a dream for the sport’s showpiece event. These are tough times no doubt to be in selectors’ boots. They have made the call to axe a whole lot of seniors and need to show faith in the young charges they have chosen. In the meantime, the team also needs to pick up a few points to improve their poor ranking. Bangladesh were the ideal opponents to get some points to your name for England and India over the next two months would prove to be formidable opponents.

If Sri Lanka can win the next two games, they can move up to number nine; ahead of teams like Zimbabwe and Ireland. If they don’t, they have got to bite the bullet and face harsher realities having let grass grow under their feet having ignored vital aspects like fitness, fielding and discipline.

There were some glaring errors during the first ODI that Sri Lanka lost by 33 runs and of the main aspects was that the team got the combination wrong.

Opening batsman Danushka Gunathilaka played so well with an array of attacking shots – there were five boundaries in his 21 – but he perished playing one too many drives. On a track where the ball was not coming onto the bat the batsmen were struggling with their timing. More than the drive, the sweep and the reverse sweep would have been an ideal tool on this track. Talking of the sweep, there’s no better batsman to execute it than Niroshan Dickwella.

His mannerisms at times can be irritating but Dickwella can be such an important asset to the team with his ability to put the bowlers off their rhythm with his unconventional batting. Why he has not played an ODI since March 2019 is beyond us.

One of the things that they had identified in our ODI cricket was that the team had not been able to utilize the quota of 50 overs often. So they came up with a solution. It was to pick someone to bat through the innings. The person who was chosen to do that job was Dimuth Karunaratne. His calming influence in leading the side was an additional bonus. He did such a wonderful job having brought together a team that was in disarray.

Karunaratne was in the form of his life having amassed 427 runs in three innings during the recent Test series in Kandy. His numbers were Bradmansque but for some strange reason he was kicked out of the ODI side. Nobody had told him that his strike rate was poor in limited over cricket. Nobody had told him that he had to play a few attacking shots. All what he had been told was to bat through the innings and he finds himself out of the side for doing exactly what was asked of him to do. It does not make sense.

Sri Lanka opted to play two wrist spinners in the opening match. There’s Dhananjaya de Silva too. He was the pick of the bowlers claiming three wickets with his off-spin. Should they have played Ramesh Mendes is an interesting question. Bangladesh are depending heavily on spin. Should you bring your specialist off-spinner into the side is something for the authorities to ponder. Or should he replace Lakshan Sandakan? The left-arm wrist spinner goes for runs. That doesn’t matter if he can pick up three of four wickets. If he does not, since you already have a wrist spinner in Wanindu Hasaranga, you need to look at the other Mendis.

It was a brilliant show by Hasaranga. His clean hitting was so good to watch and had the top order stretched a few partnerships, Sri Lanka could have got over the line. There are those who are talking that Hasaranga should bat up the order. He is someone who is ideal for number seven; a good finisher. Let him not do more than what he could chew.


Foreign News

Australia T20 captain retires from international cricket




Aaron Finch hit 63 in his final international innings against Ireland at the 2022 Men's T20 World Cup (pic BBC)

BBC reported that former Australia white-ball captain Aaron Finch has announced his retirement from international cricket.

Opening batter Finch, 36, was Australia’s T20 captain, having retired from one-day internationals in September..

He represented Australia in five Tests, 146 one-day internationals and 103 T20s, leading them to their first T20 World Cup title in 2021.

Finch said it had been “incredible honour” to play for Australia.

He is set to continue playing in domestic T20 competitions, including in the Big Bash League (BBL) for Melbourne Renegades.

Continue Reading


Fun Run announcing Asian Games at Port City today



The Fun Run announcing the Asian Games will be held at Port City today. The event was announced at a function held in Colombo on Monday.

The official Fun Run announcing the 19th Asian Games will be held under the patronage of the Olympic Council of Asia Director General -Dr. Husain Al-Musallam and a host of dignitaries at the Colombo International Financial City (Port City) today.

The quadrennial Asian Games which was originally scheduled for September 2022 was postponed in May due to the rapid spread of COVID-19 in and around the host city of Hangzhou in China. The Game will now be held in Hangzhou, China from September 23 to October 8, 2023 under the motto of “Heart to Heart, @Future.”

The ‘Fun Run’ which acts like a baton relay of sorts was announced at a function held in Colombo yesterday.

The Fun Run will be held at the presence of Wu Jianzhong -Deputy Director of Games Services Department, Ge Jianyang -Staff of Press and Public Relations Department, Bao Hanyuan -Staff of Games Services Department and delegates from the Olympic Council of Asia. The National Olympic Committee of Sri Lanka will be represented by its President Suresh Subramaniam, Secretary General NOC Sri Lanka Maxwell de Silva along with the executive committee of the NOC Sri Lanka.

To liven up this colourful pageant there will be a surfeit of sports and cultural activities involving over 700 persons. The highlight of the day’s activity will be a Jet Ski show presented by Sri Lanka Navy and a traditional Martial Art -Angampora Demonstration recited by the Army sports division. The President of the National Olympic Committee of Sri Lanka Suresh Subramaniam aired the importance of the Fun Run. He said “the presence of the Olympic Council of Asia Director General -Dr. Husain Al-Musallam who is the main cog behind Asian Games 2022, signifies how serious they are about the success of the event. Besides that, there is a host of other Games Officials who will await eagerly to see the successful completion of this event and report back as to what Sri Lanka is capable of delivering. For us this is a momentous opportunity and we are taking it with both hands”.

Commenting on the significance of the event, NOC Sri Lanka Secretary General Maxwell de Silva said “akin to the Olympic Day Run or the Commonwealth Games Baton relay or the Asian Games Fun Run is very significant. In reality the “Fun Run” is the flag-off of the event and the Lankan leg of the baton that will take place at the Port City, Colombo.” The Olympic Council of Asia is stepping up its “Asian Games for All” promotional campaign right now.

A major part of this campaign is the Asian Games Fun Run, which is held throughout the continent and brings together elite athletes, social runners, students/children and sports officials. The OCA is working closely with the National Olympic Committees in all five zones to create a Fun Run calendar in order to promote the upcoming Asian Games and involve all levels of the community in a family-oriented activity. To this end, the OCA has released a schedule for February and March taking in two of the five zones: South Asia and South East Asia. The programme is still being assembled for the three remaining zones -West Asia, Central Asia and East Asia -in conjunction with the NOCs and will be released shortly.

Continue Reading


Amameth century propels Mahanama



Under 19 Cricket

by Reemus Fernando

A century by Kavindu Amameth was the highlight of the day as Mahanama posted 363 runs against De Mazenod on day one of the traditional cricket encounter at Kandana on Monday.

Amameth top scored with 126 runs (in 173 balls, 9x4s, 4x6s) and put on a third wicket stand of 206 runs with Inuka Karannagoda as Mahanama dominated proceedings on day one.

In the Under 19 Division I Tier ‘B’ match at Uyanwatta, St. Servatius’ cemented their top position in Group ‘Z’ by scoring a first innings points against Devapathiraja.


St. Servatius’ earn first innings points against Devapathiraja at Uyanwatta



113 all out in 35.3 overs (Gimhan Rasanjana 24, Pawan Sandesh 24, Tharush Damindu 3/18, Kushan Wijerama 4/25, Chathum Bimsara 2/32) and 151 for 8 decl. in 36.2 overs (Darshaka Sandeep 46, Jeewaka Shashin 31; Chathum Bimsara 2/21, Kushan Wijerama 3/34, Thisan Dewmith 2/40)

St. Servatius’

92 for 6 overnight 123 all out in 48.3 overs (Mithila Charles 39, Vishwa Supun 23, Diniru Abeywickramasinghe 25; Irushka Thimira 6/47, Puljith Wathsuka 2/34) and 110 for 4 in 26.2 overs (Mithila Charles 27, Diniru Abeywickramasinghe 36, Chiran Neththaru 23n.o.; Puljith Wathsuka 2/38)

Mahanama dominate day one proceedings at Kandana



363 all out in 92.1 overs (Kavindu Amameth 126, Inuka Karannagoda 75, Rashmika Perera 52, Chamika Heenatigala 24, Eshan Withanage 24; Kavindu Kaushalya 4/97, Thushan Udayanga 3/64, Sithum Fernando 3/71)

De Mazenod

2 for 1 in 5 overs

Continue Reading