Four-nation cricket tournament in Kenya

By Elmo Rodrigopulle

Monday 23 September 1996

SAJEEWA de Silva, a left arm medium pacer is the new cap in the Sri Lanka team that will tour Kenya for the Four-Nation Cricket Tourney beginning on September 28.

The man unlucky to be left out is right hand batsman Marvan Atapattu who was a member of the World Cup and Singer Series winning squad.

De Silva has been among the wickets this season and fully deserves his break. De Silva has been to the fast bowlers clinic conducted by Dennis Lillee in Madras and came back with high recommendations from the former champion Aussie fast man.

He was included in the national pool. He showed his prowess capturing over 70 wickets last season and his inclusion does not come as a surprise.

De Silva will join Chaminda Vaas, Ravindra Pushpakumara and Pramodaya Wickremasinghe as the four pacies on tour.

Critics might argue that Wickremasinghe is lucky to keep his place. But then all cricketers go through a lean period and it is no different with Wickremesinghe. He is too young to be discarded and all credit to the selectors for placing their confidence in him.

The tour squad reads: Arjuna Ranatunga (captain), Aravinda de Silva (VC), Roshan Mahanama, Sanath Jayasuriya, Asanka Gurusinha, Hashan Tillekeratne, Romesh Kaluwitharne, Kumara Dharmasena, Muthiah Muralitheran, Chaminda Vaas, Ravindra Pushpakumara, Pramodaya Wickremasinghe, Upul Chandana and Sajeewa de Silva.

The Sri Lankans emplane with great confidence after their Singer Series triumph and after sweeping aside the Zimbabweans in a two test series 2-nil.

The other nations playing in the Kenyan tourney are South Africa, Pakistan an and host nation Kenya. Sri Lanka face Kenya in the opener on Saturday. It should be a good game as the Kenyans under new captain Maurice Udumbe are a formidable outfit on home soil.

But the clash that everyone will be waiting for will be the one between Sri Lanka and South Africa. These teams did not meet in the World Cup tourney and it will be interesting to see how the game goes.

South Africa were one of the hot favourites for the World Cup until they came up against a determined West Indies side who beat them convincingly.

Sri Lanka will be out to avenge their Singer Cup final defeat in Singapore when they face Pakistan.

The Sri Lanka squad will fly on Wednesday and will arrive in Kenya on Thursday morning.

Source: The Daily News

Contributed by CricInfo Management
Date-stamped : 25 Feb1998 - 14:54