Atapattu rises in the ranks, regrets she was left behind | Sunday Observer

Atapattu rises in the ranks, regrets she was left behind

20 June, 2021
Chamari Atapattu
Chamari Atapattu

Sri Lanka women’s cricket skipper Chamari Atapattu reached the seventh position in the latest ICC T20 all-rounder rankings while also being among the top 20 players in both ODI and T20 formats but regrets she was deprived of opportunities to rise further.

She is in 12th position in the ODI batswomen category and in 14th position in the T20 format. In addition she is ranked 18th in the ODI all-rounder rankings.

“If only I had more chances to take part in international matches I could have improved my ranking but due to this pandemic all plans are jeopardized,” said Atapattu.

The most prolific left hand batter in the Sri Lanka women’s team, Atapattu said it was disappointing not only for her but all her team mates as well.

“We have youngsters in our National pool of 40 players who are doing physical training at home according to the schedule and hope to resume training after the vaccinations very soon.

“At our last Australian tour in October 2019 we could not get a chance to play an ODI game while in March 2020 we played our last T-20 World Cup match and after that we had no International matches,” said Atapattu.

“Shashikala Siriwardena and I got a chance to play in the women’s IPL in Sharjah last November but due to the pandemic we missed the franchise league matches over travel restrictions.

“There was a chance to play in the English league and Big Bash in Australia but all arrangements ended in a big disappointment,” added Atapattu.

The Sri Lanka pool was formed to focus on the World Cup scheduled to be played from March 3 to April 4 in New Zealand next year and the players were to play in a qualification tournament in June in Sri Lanka which has been postponed to December.

New Zealand, the host country with England, Australia, South Africa and India have already qualified while Sri Lanka, West Indies, Pakistan and Bangladesh will contest December’s qualification tournament in Sri Lanka.

“Experienced players like Shashikala Siriwardena and Sripalee Weerakkody have retired from the international arena and we have to look for newcomers to pick a good side and we are looking forward to the guidance of our new coach Hashan Tillekaratne,” said Atapattu.

She also praised the work done by Apsari Tillekarate who went on a quest to hunt for talent in the country while promoting the sport at school level.