Marvan on backstabbing, Gabba outburst and future of Sri Lankan cricket

Marvan Atapattu

At the Gabba, where the first Test of the 2007 series was played, Marvan hit out. He called the selectors ‘a bunch of puppets headed by a joker.’ His outburst hit the headlines in back pages all over the world. Twelve years on, Marvan has no regret about what happened that day. Now a television commentator for Channel Seven, Sunday Island caught up with the ex-captain and former Head Coach. In this candid interview, Marvan discusses his double hundred in Kandy after getting hit by a vicious Wasim Akram bouncer, lack of young talent in the sport, reasons why he quit as Head Coach, his new career and lots more.


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  1. Marvan can talk all about back stabbing but he is the biggest back stabber who single handedly worked behind the scenes to get rid off Geoff Marsh. Marvan was so ambitious and greedy who wanted to coach Srilanka. He made allegations against Geoff Marsh and with the help of Nishantha they got rid of him. Ultimately SLC had to fork out more money when Geoff decided to sue SLC. And with the help of Nishantha Marvan became the coach.
    It’s under Marvan when things started to nose dive. He destroyed the careers of Thirumane and Chandimal who lost thier confidences.
    I find it so humerous when he is taking about our team. Our rot started under him and we never recovered. I am not convinced about Chandika. I hear that he is milking SLC like Marvan did but our performance on the field remains the same
    I don’t think getting rid of him now will change anything as horse’s have bolted. Only way is to make some changes below him like getting rid of Piyal and Rumesh who have done nothing to show with our bowling unit.
    I would suggest that they bring in someone like Aravinda as the Director of coaching and Chandiks to report to him, it takes away his authority. It might work because Aravinda can be the calming influence between Chandika and Ashantha.
    Not really sure it will happen but it is a point of thought before our 2019 world cup becomes the worst nightmare.

  2. Although Marven has his own faults he is right about back stabbing, Mahela and Sanga wanted to remove the senior players like Marven, Vaas to create team junior to them so they can control. These two didn’t change their batting positions so the new guys like Thirimanna and Chandimal to develop and then left the team high and dry. No doubt these two are great players but they are selfish in this respect

    It’s true that these two cannot be blamed for every misfortune the current team is going through now, but they are partly responsible because they were the two who was in control of the team before they left, they should have think about teams future by giving more confidence to the youngsters by making them bat in more important positions like no 3,4. That is what Arjuna has done to develop the young players

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