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Cricket selectors in a dilemma

The Sri Lanka Cricket selectors headed by Ashantha de Mel and comprising Brendon Kuruppu, Chaminda Mendis and Hemantha Wickremaratne will be in a dilemma when they sit to pick the squad for the World Cup in England and Wales in May/June.We say this because going on the form of our cricketers now in South Africa they have been an absolute calamity and a big disappointment. Not one batsman or a bowler has shown consistency. As fielders they have more often than not been butter fingered.

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  1. As explained in this article, everyone (including our selectors) should realize that according to the current form of our batsmen, all rounders and bowlers I do not think we can select even 6 / 8 players (forget about the number 15) who have the true potential to perform in this years WC. We still have not developed any batsmen (except for no 3,4 or 5 positions to perform according to the very demanding & high batting standards as required in the WC.

    We have not yet developed batsmen to achieve the following targets;
    (1) opening batsmen who can score at a SR of over 90% / 100% consistently and exploit the field restrictions to score 6s during the first 10 overs, (2) a no 6 power hitter / clean hitter who can score runs well over 100% SR as well as score big sixes (at least a sixes ratio of over 25%) and (3) and even a consistently performing no 7 power hitter (Thisara is completely out of form these days as he is struggling to connect his shots. just forget about hitting sixes ).

    Mr De Mel, I know you mention that you are targeting a minimum 50 over score of 310 in this WC. In my opinion this is a far too high score to be achieved by our batsmen. If we can score 260 / 270 runs (which is not going to be enough though) we will be lucky. This score will be further reduced if we include in the team, out of form or slow scoring batsmen like Upul Tharanga (as opener) or Chandimal (for no 4).

  2. SOME COMMENTS FOR THE SELECTORS TO NOTE;

    Have you ever thought of a SR and R6 (sixes ratio) requirement for an opening batsman’s capability to exploit the field restrictions during the initial 10 overs.???

    If you look at the performances during the last 12 months according to Cricinfo Statguru Records, just see the average SRs and 6s ratios achieved by Power Hitting opening batsmen developed by other countries. These are long term (12 month averages) averages and can be at least 20% more on any future WC match.
    SR (%) R6 (6s ratio / runs scored in sixes )
    Bairstow (England) 129 17
    Roy (England) 116 15
    Gayle (WI) 116 50
    Guptil (NZ) 104 21
    Munrow (NZ) 105 15
    Sharma (India) 95 21

    Now this is what we have in our our cupboard !!!!

    Dickwella (SL) 98 6
    Dhanushka (SL) 78* 0*
    Tharanga (SL) 83* 11*

    * Not at all suitable for an opening / power hitting batsman. They can never contribute in achieving a high 10 over PP1 score of at least 70 to 80 runs..

    Sadeera (SL) 101 (Good) 0 (can score many 4s, but needs more performances)
    Avishka (SL) 92 (good) 8 (good both in SR & R6 but not consistently
    performing as we have seen)

    Kusal P (at no 3 /. 4) 96 (v. good) 7 (v. good for a no 3/4 batsman)

    SOME THOUGHT FOR THE SELECTORS;

    Although I am not supporting a fact of changing a proven batting position of a batsman, KUSAL P IS THE ONLY OPTION WE HAVE WHO HAS THE ABILITY TO EXPLOIT THE FIELD RESTRICTIONS IN SCORING SIXES DURING THE FIRST 10 OVERS.

    IN MY OPINION THE BEST AND MOST APPROPRIATE TWO OPENING BATSMEN WE HAVE ACCORDING TO THEIR STRENGTHS ARE DIMUTH & KUSAL P.. BUT NONE OF THEM HAVE OPENED IN RECENT ODI MATCHES.

    THIS CAN BE TRIED IN THE COMING PROVINCIAL TOURNAMENT.

  3. One of the important points in this article is whether it will be the right decision to appoint a Bowler Capain (Malinga) for our WC team. With so many problems with our probable batsmen not sorted out by our selectors, I think we should appoint a batsman captain and not a bowler captain, either Mathews or Dimuth. In that regard Mathews has a better record as he has been captaining our ODI team in the past.

  4. I think Dimuth’s chance for captaining the ODI team for world cup has been vanished with the recent incident. If Asnatha and Co. going to appoint him as the captain it will suggest how lightly SLC is considering player’s discipline off the field, which won’t do any good for the youth to come. Angelo is not gonna work with Hathuru and Malinga’s record as a captain in the recent past won’t guarantee him the reigns

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