Sri Lanka’s premier telecommunications provider, Dialog Axiata have come forward to sponsor the Sri Lanka T20 team for the upcoming Asia Cup 2016 which starts in Bangladesh on 24th February.
The sponsorship was officially announced at a grand media conference held at Sports Ministry Auditorium on Wednesday evening with the participation of many distinguished guests such as Sports Minister, Hon Dayasiri Jayasekara, President of Asian Cricket Council and Sri Lanka Cricket, Deputy Speaker Thilanga Sumathipala, Group Chief Executive of Dialog Axiata PLC, Dr. Hans Wijayasuriya, Vice-President of Sri Lanka Cricket, Jayantha Dharmadasa, Group Chief Marketing Office, Dialog Axiata, Mrs Amali Nanayakkara and Sri Lanka T20 captain Lasith Malinga.
The reigning champions, Sri Lanka will take on the winner of the tournament’s qualifying round in their opening game on 25th February before they meet the hosts’ Bangladesh on Sunday 28th, World No.1 ranked, India on 1st March and Pakistan on 4th March before the knockout stage.
Hon Thilanga Sumathiapala, President of Sri Lanka Cricket shared his views at the media briefing, “In Sri Lanka, cricket has always been more than just simply a sport, it united this island and it embodies the spirit of sportsmanship. I want to extend my heartfelt gratitude to Dialog Axiata for extending their backing beyond the sponsorship agreement to support our cricket team’s campaign to defend the Asia Cup title in Bangladesh. I believe in the boys led by Lasith Malinga and there will be neutral umpires as well.”
Hon Dayasiri Jayasekara, Sports Minister of Sri Lanka contributed as well, “As a team, we must think that we can win the trophy and continue to spark in the field of cricket. I have complete trust on the elected board of members in Sri Lanka Cricket to take the sport we all love to the highest possible place in the world. We had a few setbacks in the previous few tours but I believe we will successfully retain the Asia Cup and the World T20.”
Sri Lanka defeated Pakistan in a hard-fought final at the Asia Cup 2014 to become Asian Champions for the fifth time in Dhaka, Bangladesh. This time, the Sri Lankan contingent will leave the island on 20th February with the sole intention of bringing the cup back to the island.
Dialog Axiata PLC also unveiled their official ‘Wish & Win’ competition with the presence of the Sports Minister to give an opportunity for the beloved fans to present their wishes to the team ahead of the Asia Cup and World T20.