Stanley Jayasinghe the trail blazer | Daily News

Stanley Jayasinghe the trail blazer

Nalanda College Team-1949 Carl Obeysekera seated first left next to Stanley Jayasinghe Ashley De Silva seated second from right.

Nalanda College created a record when three schoolboys were selected to the Ceylon squad. Carl Obeysekera opening batsman, the great Stanley Jayasinghe and the late Ashley de Silva (12th man). Stanley was a brilliant cricketer who captained Ceylon and played for Leicestershire with distinction, Clive Inman who played for St Peter’s also played alongside Stanley Jayasinghe for the same county.


Stanley Jayasinghe

In my early student days in England, I visited an old pub in Leicestershire and was pleasantly surprised to see the photographs of these two adorning the walls of it. At one time Clive Inman had the distinction of scoring the fastest fifty in county cricket.

Clive during his schooldays broke the Joe/Pete batting record and I can remember him getting retired due to exhaustion. He was frail looking but had electric footwork. His brother Roger played for S Thomas’.

Stanley Jayasinghe after his succesfull stint at county cricket returned home and was appointed as the National coach. He was never shy of calling “a spade a spade” and the outspoken sportsman, he firmly told the then Sports Minister where to get off and that managing the team and coaching was his province.

The present Sports Minister fortunatly is not the type to interfere with selection affairs, also the chief selector Sanath Jayasuriya who has done a marvelous job thus far by unearthing raw talent who were instrumental in our Test series rout of the Aussies, is getting short circuited by politiciens who are in the lower rungs but holding high positions in the decision making body.

One good thing about cricket in Sri Lanka is that “Match Fixing” is never heard of, although there were rumblings in the distant past. The credit should go to people like Thilanga Sumathipala, Jayantha Dharmadasa, Mohan de Silva and Ashley de Silva.

Those who have read “------AND NOTHING BUT THE TRUTH’? written by DEON GOUWS about the fall from grace of Hansie Cronje will know what greed for money can bring disaster.

There is another germ which can effect talented cricketers who come from poor backgrounds, that is the Brand Ambassoderships. If these could be limited?

Coming back to Stanley Jayasinghe, the altercation with the then Sports Minister ended his stint as coach. We all are proud of Stanley Jayasinghe for standing up to the Minister and telling him where to get off.

Stanley Jayasinghe together with Carl Obeysekera and Ashley de Silva Blazed the trail for over 20 Nalandians to don the Sri Lanka cap and bring glory to Nalanda.

Bandula Warnapura the first Test captain of Sri Lanka, Roshan Mahanama was an ICC Elite Panel referee and Kumar Dharmasena is an ICC elite panel umpire. Mahela Jayawardene is the best batsmen produced by Nalanda and in my book the best Sri Lankan cricket captain thus far. 


 

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