Kandy’s most feared fast bowler Sonny Yatawara | Daily News


Kandy’s most feared fast bowler Sonny Yatawara

Kandy’s Sonny Yatawara born in 1938 was rated an outstanding fast bowler of his generation. Sonny was known for his fiery temperament, 'never-say-die' attitude and was a popular figure with his vast following of fans.

From the day he took to playing cricket, especially fast bowing he was feared and deadly. He started his cricket at Dharmaraja College and later crossed over to Ananda College in the mid 1950’s. This stocky pacie bowled with a square arm action. He packed a vicious bouncer and a yorker that batsmen feared. Unfortunately he died at the age of 62 in 2000. 

After his career at Dharmaraja College, he played for Ananda College where he further improved his bowling. At club level he played for SSC, Saracens and Sri Lanka, called Ceylon at that time. His his most prized and treasured wicket was that of West Indies genius Sir Garfield Sobers whom he cleaned bowled in a match on February 28, 1961 at the Colombo Oval for a duck off his first ball in the Daily Mirror XI v CCA match which also featured West Indies cricketers Rohan Kanhai, Wesley Hall, Seymour Nurse, Chester Watson and Conrad Hunte.

Over the years Dharmaraja has produced some top quality fast bowlers like T.B. Kehelgamuwa, Sonny Yatawara, Ananda Jayasundera, and also bowlers like Mahinda Pethiyagoda,  Sarath Ratnayake,  Janaka Mendis, Thilina Tennakoon, Priyantha Talwatte, Anura Fernando and N.K. Angamana. 

Sonny was employed at Ceylon Tobacco and later took to cricket coaching and coached Dharmaraja College in 1962 and later St Thomas’ College, Matale. In 1978, he coached Trinity College junior teams and also Kandy Cricket Club.

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