Sri Lanka chief defends Marsh sacking
CRICKET: Sri Lanka's cricket chief Friday defended the sacking of
Australian coach Geoff Marsh and the selection of a new team captain,
saying the changes would help usher in a new era of "cricketing
"We will reap the benefits of these changes in the fullness of time,"
Sri Lanka Cricket president Upali Dharmadasa said in statement. The
sacking of Marsh on Wednesday - just three months into a two-year
contract - was widely criticised, with former team skipper Arjuna
Ranatunga calling the move "disgraceful" and "unprofessional".
Marsh was replaced by South African Graham Ford, who becomes Sri
Lanka's fourth coach since Australian Trevor Bayliss stepped aside after
the World Cup final in April 2011. While voicing gratitude for Marsh's
efforts, Dharmadasa said it was time for Sri Lankan cricket to "move
The appointment of Ford was "based on the fact that he can cope with
the demands a 21st Century coach has to cope with in the international
arena", the statement said.
The change in coaches came two days after Tillakaratne Dilshan quit
as team captain, to be replaced by former skipper Mahela Jayawardene.
"This change will also help Dilshan to concentrate more on his game,"
"We strongly believe Dilshan's contribution will be much more if he
is relived of additional responsibility. This will help the teams
Sri Lanka's sports minister last week named a four-member selection
panel and gave them one year to put the team in order after the side
lost Test and one-day series to England, Australia, Pakistan and South