Herath and Wijetunga come together to stamp out chucking | Sunday Observer

Herath and Wijetunga come together to stamp out chucking

6 October, 2019
Piyal Wijetunga(L) and Rangana Herath
Piyal Wijetunga(L) and Rangana Herath

An advanced spin bowling clinic will be conducted by specialist spin bowling coach Piyal Wijetunga at the Axion Sport Complex, Ambatenna in Kandy today (October 6) and one of the main aims will be to stamp out future “chuckers” that has caused Sri Lanka plenty of international embarrassment.

The former St. Anthony’s College Katugastota cricketer Wijetunga played in only one Test series against South Africa in 1993 and became the coach of the spinners. He also rendered his services to the national team for 11 years from 2008.

Muttiah Muralidaran, Ruwan Kalpage and Wijetunga emerged from the same school but later Muralidaran too received some tips from Wijetunga. “We have to give advanced spin bowling training for the spinners to build up their talent,” said Wijetunga in an interview with the Sunday Observer. “Today some spinners have suspect bowling actions. Sachitra Senanayake, Tharidu Kaushal and Akila Dhananjaya had to face this situation. We do not have the modern technology to recognize these types of bowling actions but with our experience we can recognize the actions of bowlers,” added Wijetunga. The most successful left arm leg spinner Rangana Herath will also join Wijetunga to conduct this clinic.

Herath completed a level three course recently after retiring from international cricket. This is the beginning of a series of clinics the duo intend to conduct island-wide. “Our experience is the key factor to developing spin bowlers. We want to give advanced training to the spinners, which is very important today. Normally we correct their mistakes during practices. I think this is not enough to develop their skills.

“Our plan is to get the over-15 year old players for this advance course and then call up players between the ages of 15 to 17 for two hours. The over-17 players will be put through two-hour advance training sessions,” said Wijetunga.

Wijetunge said the areas that need more focusing are how to deliver the ball with a proper technique, make variations and how to take wickets with special focus on how to prepare mentally before and during the match.

“Bowlers should feel free and not come under pressure. Instead they have to learn how to apply the pressure on the batsman,” emphasised Wijetunga.

The duo plan to conduct the advance courses once a month in Kandy, Colombo, Gampaha, Galle and in the North, East and North Central regions.