Shashikala to call it a day | Sunday Observer

Shashikala to call it a day

Shashikala Siriwardena
Shashikala Siriwardena

Veteran women’s cricketer Shashikala Siriwardena is to retire from international cricket after this year’s T20 World Cup in Australia scheduled to start on February 15.

She took wing to Australia with the Sri Lanka team on Thursday night.

Siriwardena captained the Sri Lanka team earlier and her retirement comes at a time the team aims to lift its image after some losses in the recent past.

“There are so many young players coming up and I think this is the best time to move on,” said Shashikala. “I haven’t had any personal milestone but when I play for the team I want to achieve something good in my cricket carrier.” She captained the Sri Lanka team in 2013 that beat sides like India, England and South Africa.

In 2014 she was the ICC’s top ranked all-rounder in the women’s segment having started off her career as an off-spin bowler.

“My coaches persuaded me to develop batting skills and today am proud to retire as an allrounder,” said Shashikala. “Those days we had less matches but today we are lucky to play more matches. I think by the time a player reaches the age of 30 or 32 she can be at her peak with the facilities we now have. I think physical fitness holds the key,” he said.

Shashikala has played in 118 ODIs and 77 T-20s and is hoping to sign off on a high note. She is the only Sri Lankan to have scored over 1000 runs and captured over 100 wickets in ODIs.