SLC organized the provincial super four tournaments with the utter purpose of supporting the selection committee to select the squad for the upcoming world cup. However, in the end, Mr Asantha de mel’s headache turned into a full-blown migraine.
First, two frontline opening candidates likes of Dickwella and Gunathilake failed miserably leaving selectors no room to justify their inclusion to the WC squad. Of them, Dhanushka was always being unfocused and troublesome, but SLC had invested heavily on Dickwella since 2016. He was offered vice-captaincy to which he responded well for a while before began to fail in SA.
Two other openers who were in the radar were Avishka and Tharanga who played for Team Colombo and their last two matches washed away without giving them an opportunity to secure their places in the WC squad. The team Colombo also included Shehan Jayasuriya, Angelo Perera, Dinesh Chandimal and Kamindu Mendis, all of them had an outside chance to make into the final 15 if weather permitted them to play.
Another player whom the selectors would have loved to watch was Dushmantha Chameera who was in the Team Galle which was the opposition of the team Colombo in two washed away games.
In the spin department, the tournament did not give a conclusion on Akila’s consistency, while no better off-spinning option emerged among others. On the other hand, Jeewan Mendis out shadowed Jeffery Vandersay who was the prime runner for the leggie’s role in the WC. Now selectors have to choose one of them.
While main candidates for the WC failed in the tournament, youngsters like, Sadun Weerakkody, Bhanuka Rajapakshe, Wanidu Hasaranga, and Minod Bhanuka made strong performances, though they would not assure a WC spot at the moment.
One can think that this tournament was organized with the sole purpose of testing Dimuth Karunarathne’s ability as an ODI player and a captain. He scored 165 runs in 4 matches and we can safely say that he earned his position in the squad. However, his team ended up in the bottom of the table following the loss to Team Dambulla, giving no confidence to the selectors to make him the captain. On the other hand, the current SL captain Maliga brought his team to the final, topping the table too.
As we see here, the provincial super four tournament did not help SL selectors as they expected. However, the final 15 to be announced by 18 th of April. We will hope they would be able to select a balanced squad which can change SL fortune in WC.