England A team here Jan 27:
Sri Lanka A players get golden opportunity
CRICKET: With the England A team touring the Island this month, the
Sri Lankan counterparts and the fringe players should get the
opportunity to prove their worth and pressurize the established players
when the two teams meet each other in a five-match ODI series starting
from January 27.
The tourists will play only in a ODI series, two matches at the
Rangiri Dambulla Stadium, one at the Welegedera Stadium, Kurunegala and
two in Colombo at the R. Premadasa International Cricket Stadium.
A team tours will no doubt help to build a strong main team and
this tour is bound to develop both teams.
The development of our teams is no doubt based on these A tours
where emerging players have cemented their places in the main side.
Playing against foreign teams give a good assessment as to where you
stand in the international arena. The tour should make the players
tougher with mounting pressure situations at times. One can find top
quality players confronting even in A sides because it is a one big
tussle to enter the main team, said Romesh Kaluvitharana the Sri Lankan
He went on to say that he was proud that he was able to push about
ten or twelve players from the A side to the national team during his
two-and-a-half-year tenure with the back up team.
There are many players who had made their presence felt in the
national team after being in the A side. There are some who are among
the established players and I am proud of them. Credit should also be
given to the players as well for their untiring efforts in reaching
higher levels. This particular tour is very important for the young
talented players as it could be the path to big time cricket.
In the last two Sri Lanka A tours to Australia and England, players
of the calibre of Dinesh Chandimal and Lahiru Thirimanne got the
opportunity to prove themselves. Likewise Seekuge Prasanna, Thisara
Perera, Kosala Kulsekera, Dimuth Karunaratne, Suranga Lakmal, Nuwan
Pradeep, Kaushal Silva to name some players who have come through the
process. There is also Sachitra Senanayake who left for South Africa as
a replacement and Kusal Janith Perera who played in a T20 match against
Pakistan in the UAE.
Close to about 15 players have been drafted into the national team at
some time or other, added Kaluvitharana. The A team concept have
given the opportunity even for some Test players to make a come back
after a short stint representing the A side. Even players of the class
of Thilan Samaraweera has been in the A team while not on tour. This
helps the younger players to boost their confidence. However, a younger
player needs more exposure at A team level to do better at the highest
level. So, the players should be regularly exposed to the International
arena. It is important that the competitive level should be at a higher
grade for a player to give the best performance.
January 25-26 - Sri Lanka/England practice at Dambulla Stadium.
January 27 - 1st ODI Sri Lanka A vs England A at Dambulla.
January 28 - practice at Dambulla
January 29 - 2nd ODI at Dambulla
January 31 - 3rd ODI at Welegedera Stadium, Kurunegala Travel to
February 3 - 4th ODI at R. Premadasa Stadium (Day)
February 6 5th ODI at R. Premadasa Stadium (Day)
The Sri Lanka A team to meet England A in a five match ODI
Thilina Kandamby (captain), Dimuth Karunaratne, (Vice captain),
Mahela Udawatte, Danushka Gunatileka, Bhanuka Rajapakse, Kusal Janith
Perera (Wicket keeper), Farveez Maharoof, Malintha Warnapura, Ashan
Priyanjana, Angelo Perera, Kanishka Alvitigala, Thilina Thushara,
Tharanga Lakshitha, Nuwan Pradeep, Suraj Randiv, Sachitra Senanayake,
Seekkuge Prasanna, Malinga Bandara, Sajeeva Weerakoon and Sachit