Stressing that ‘I won’t let anyone foil my right of administering Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) having being elected by the popular vote’, Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) President Hon. Thilanga Sumathipala said that SLC’s top priority was for Sri Lanka to win the 2019 World Cup in England. “As such I request from everybody to help SLC in this endeavor instead of being detracted by a few saboteurs.”
Addressing the media at SLC headquarters on Friday he said, “If sabotage raises its head sadly Sri Lanka’s opportunity to win the world cup will be ruined.”
He said that he would be contesting the forthcoming elections for reelection so as to optimise the country’s cricket internationally.
Sumathipala went on to outline the broad areas that SLC had turned to uplift Sri Lanka Cricket. This ranged from putting the national cricket back on track as well as SLC’s marketing strategies in making the organization potentially profit oriented. One major leap forward was the staging of the Nidahas Trophy Triangular and the mooting of the Lankan Premier League (LPL). These were far reaching steps initiated by SLC.
Among plans to drive national cricket, both Asanka Gurusinha and Head Coach Chandika Hathurusinghe would be the stimulus towards that end. Gurusinha would play a key role manning the High Performance Centre and the Brain Centre. A new Team Manager would be appointed.
Sumathipala said, “Gurusinha counts lots of international experience being a Level-3 international coach. So his technical knowledge will be key to rehabilitating injured players which has been a major issue where we need a high profile coach to drive high performance and it has been an unanimous decision to head the High Performance Centre. After the West Indies tour Gurusinha will take over from Simon Willis. In fact he has the best knowledge about the national team” In his dual roles also manning the Brain Centre where both would be
The SLC President also referred to strategic areas of success the SLC had reaped such as the staging of the Nidahas Trophy Triangular in Sri Lanka. The turnover had gone up to a record Rs. 1.3 billion from just seven matches. It was the highest ever revenue ever collected by SLC from a tournament staged in Sri Lanka. The profit netted in was Rs. 943 million which too was the highest ever by SLC at that level. We are happy at the massive commercial success through the Nidahas trophy and intend staging similar tournaments in Sri Lanka. He lauded the efforts of the Operations Manager, Jerome Jayaratne who had controlled the marketing strategy to the optimum roping in major international marketers which was unique in SLC history. Similarly, the appointment of former cricketer turned international television commentator, Russel Arnold as director of the Lankan Premier League (LPL) to be staged from August 18 to September 10 was another step in the right direction at making this novel concept a success in Sri Lanka.
By Srian Obeyesekere
-The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of Sri Lanka Cricket-