"Enjoying success requires the ability to adapt. Only by being open to change will you have a true opportunity to get the most from your talent." – Nolan Ryan
Another day another controversy at Sri Lanka Cricket. The term professionalism it seems is a word that no one in Sri Lanka Cricket seems to understand. On the eve of the national teams departure to the world t20 the administrators seem fit to fire the current selection panel and bring in a completely new panel. Whatever the justification provided by the current administration about the failures of the previous selection panel all parties involved should be embarrassed about how the events transpired.
The problem with the current squad is that it is thoroughly predictable the same old players with the same old tricks.While every other international teams has changed considerably from the last world t20 either strategically or on personnel.Sri lanka continue to persist with similar personal. It is hard to understand the reluctance of the team management to give youth a chance. It is this inability to embrace the uncertain that has placed the team in their current predicament. The team management feels safe in their bubble of known players irrespective of current form.
For example the new selectors decide to bring in suranga lakmal mainly a test specialist who has only played five international t20 games has a economy rate of 8.94 and an average of 32.How is suranga lakmal better than kasun rajitha who has been in excellent form in the recent domestic tournaments .Lahiru thirimanne averages 19.78 with a strike rate of 114 in international t20’s his domestic records are similar to his international record.Going into the world t20 our top 3 will consist of Dilshan,Chandimal and thirimanne who’s strike rates are 120,102 & 114 respectively way below the requirement for any top order in t20.None of these players are comfortable hitting the ball over the infield. A player who has shown he can hit the ball over the top is danushka gunathilake who it seems is not good enough.
Sachithra senanayake who is not the same bowler after his remodeled action is struggling for form is preferred over Jeffrey vandersay.Leg spinners are always hard to hit in t20 cricket all the top countries prefer to have a legspinner in their ranks while sri lanka prefer not to use their leg spinner.Wonder if the selectors saw how well tahir and rashid did in the Eng vs SA series .Sri lanka face both teams in their group games.Nuwan Kulasekara who will be the lead fast bowler is also a worry for the Lankans the pitches are definitely not going to swing. Kulasekara will have a huge target on his back can he counter the powerful top orders of SA,ENG and WI.Of the spinners when was the last time rangana herath played a t20 before the asia cup.Sri lanka are putting a lot of faith in a player who is close to the end of his career.Only player that merits a place based on performance is young dushmantha chameera who impresses with every game he plays.
Sri lanka’s batting is also hugely reliant on the out of form Anjelo Matthews who bats too far down the order to influence the game.Milinda siriwardena will be required to provide the fireworks if the top order holds up Siriwardena is the only player with a acceptable strike rate of 137.Chamara kapugedara who is been sold to the public as a big hitter has a strike rate of whopping 119. Further proving how poor the selections have been.
Even though the stats paint a very poor picture the good news is the lankans always punch above their weight in big tournaments. With the addition of Kumar sangakkara and aravinda de silva into the current management set up it can be guaranteed the team will have a solid plan. It remains to be seen the trust put on the tried and tested will deliver or will it all end in ruins.