Sanath included in Sri Lanka team for Asia Cup
The national cricket selectors yesterday decided to include veteran
Sanath Jayasuriya in the Sri Lanka team for the Asia Cup limited overs
tournament in Pakistan following the intervention of Sports Minister
The 38-year-old dashing opener was earlier omitted from the original
squad of 15 players but the selectors were forced to change their mind
and include Jayasuriya after his blistering unbeaten century in the on
going Indian Premier League (IPL) Twenty20 tournament.
Jayasuriya, a veteran of 411 one-day internationals smashed the
second fastest century in the IPL tournament for Mumbai Indians against
Chennai Super Kings with his unbeaten 114 comprising of 11 sixes and
nine boundaries. In fact Jayasuriya is the third highest paid player in
the IPL earning a staggering 975,000 US Dollars.
The national selectors of course had picked the earlier squad prior
to Jayasuriya’s heroics with the bat. But following a discussion with
the Minister of Sports and Recreation Gamini Lokuge the selectors headed
by Chairman Ashantha de Mel did the wise thing by recalling the dashing
left hander for the Asia Cup tournament.
Jayasuriya is the highest run getter for Sri Lanka in this form of
game having accumulated a total of 12,310 runs from 399 innings at an
average of 32.30. He has scored 25 hundreds and 64 half centuries with a
highest score of 189 runs. In addition he has captured 308 wickets.
Ace spinner Muttiah Muralitharan, all rounder Farveez Maharoof and
paceman Dilhara Fernando too have been recalled to the side after having
missed the recent West Indies tour. Ajantha Mendis who made his one-day
international debut during this series has also retained his position.
Sri Lanka have been drawn together with Bangladesh and the United
Arab Emirates in Group ‘A’ while India, Pakistan and Hong Kong have been
included in Group ‘B’. The ninth edition of the Asia Cup will start on
June 24 but Sri Lanka’s opening fixture will be on the following day
The three teams in each group will play each other once with the top
two teams from each group qualifying for the second phase, where they
will again play each other once.
Karachi will host 10 of the 13 matches while Lahore will host three
and as the event is played in the summer season all matches will be
day-night starting late in the afternoon.
The first Asia Cup was held in 1984 in the UAE. India have won the
event four times, while Sri Lanka have lifted the Cup three times and
Pakistan once. The Sri Lanka team for the Asia Cup confirmed by the
Minister of Sports.
Player Age Club ODI
Mahela Jayawardena (C) 30 SSC 272
Kumar Sangakkara (VC) 30 NCC 219
Sanath Jayasuriya 38 Bloomfield 411
Tillekeratne Dilshan 31 Bloomfield 142
Muttiah Muralitharan 36 Tamil Union 305
Chaminda Vaas 34 Colts CC 315
Farveez Maharoof 23 NCC 79
Dilhara Fernando 28 SSC 123
Chamara Silva 28 Bloomfield 46
Camara Kapugedera 21 CCC 32
Nuwan Kulasekera 25 Colts CC 26
Jehan Mubarak 27 CCC 28
Kushalya Weeraratne 27 Ragama CC 13
Ajantha Mendis 23 Army SC 3
Mahela Udawatte 21 Chilaw Marians SC 3
Stand bys: Thilina Kandambi, Thilina Thushara Mirando,
Prasanna Jayawardane and Malintha Warnapura
Officials: Shriyan Samararatne - Manager, Trevor Bayliss -
Coach, Paul Farbrace - Assistant Coach, Tommy Simsek -
Physiotherapist, Jade Roberts - Trainer, Nalin de Alwis -
Computer Analyst, Lal Thamel -
Masseur and Selector on Tour ( name to be confirmed).