Key transfers ahead of 2018/19 domestic season

Key transfers ahead of 2018/19

The tier ‘A’ segment of the Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) domestic tournament will kick off on Friday, 30th November, with the best players in the local club arena ready to make a mark and push towards national selection. Here’s a look at a few key tranfers that have taken place ahead of a long season.

Key transfers ahead of the 2017/18 Domestic Cricket Season

The tier ‘A’ segment of the Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) domestic..

Lahiru Milantha

The talented wicket-keeper batsman hailing from St. Peter’s College, Colombo has made a bold move in switching from Ragama CC to Tamil Union CAC. After representing Ragama CC for a number of years and even going on to represent Sri Lanka A, the stylish left hander will feature at the top of the order with the likes of Tharanga Paranavithana, Kithuruwan Vithanage and Jeevan Mendis to follow at Tamil Union.

Malinda Pushpakumara

The man who was tipped to replace Rangana Herath as the left arm spinner of the Sri Lanka side, had a rather quiet series against England at home.

He was the architect of many Chilaw Marians’ victories while bowling them to the championship last year. The Marians have seen many of their top players leave the club due to a fall out as the talented Pushpakumara will play as the main spin bowler for Colombo Cricket Club who are among the favorites to win the title this year.

Shehan Jayasuriya

He is another star that has left Chilaw Marians and interestingly he will turn up for the newly promoted Negombo Cricket Club. Jayasuriya has been in and out of the Sri Lanka set up and will look for a change of fortune after being a consistent performer at the domestic level for the past few years.

Sachith Pathirana

Sachith Pathirana has been a stalwart at CCC but he will be anchoring a young Badureliya outfit this year in a dual role as player and coach at the age of 29.

With 23 international appearances under his belt, he will no doubt be a useful addition to the Badureliya set up but the question remains as to if he would represent Sri Lanka again. 

Milinda Siriwardena

He seems to have fallen out of the Sri Lanka radar at the age of 32, but no doubt is an excellent all-rounder who promised a lot during his time with the national team.

A man who has already represented almost 20 teams in his cricket career, he will make the switch from SSC to Saracens SC this year.

Nipun Karunanayake

Nipun Karunanayake more familiar as ‘pancha’ in the domestic circuit has been a man to watch out for in the last couple of seasons. He hit close to 1000 runs in the 2016/17 domestic tournament before following it up with 600+ in the 2017/18 season.

Unfortunately though, his team Bloomfield were relegated to the tier B segment last year after finishing last in the table which has left him with almost no option but to make the switch.

He will join Siriwardena at Saracens SC who could be the dark horses of this tournament, and will no doubt come in handy at the top of the order while his part-time leg spin could also be very useful on spin friendly surfaces.

Kusal Mendis returns to top 20

Jonny Bairstow of England, Bangladesh’s Mominul Haque..

Asitha Fernando

He has been knocking on the national doors for a while now but has only 1 ODI against Zimbabwe to show for his efforts. He was in-fact clobbered for 22 in the 2 overs he bowled in that game; a series Sri Lanka went on to lose 2-3 against Zimbabwe at home.

The fiery 21-year-old seamer is among the players who have made the switch from Chilaw Marians. He will turn up for NCC this season and will find pitches much more favorable for his type of bowling.

Sandun Weerakkody

The swashbuckling left-handed batsman who once impressed during Sri Lanka’s tour of South Africa with a half century, is almost a forgotten name in the local arena.

He has made the move to SSC from the neighboring NCC as he seeks to revive his career. He had the ideal start in the recently concluded Emerging Tournament striking a couple of explosive centuries at the top of the order, with SSC going on to become champions.

Read: Sri Lanka’s latest domestic season to begin this weekend

Sachithra Serasinghe

Probably the most consistent performer with both bat and ball in the domestic arena for the past few years is Sachithra Serasinghe. Fitness concerns have kept him away from any exposure with the national team, but no doubt he will be a valuable addition for Tamil Union CAC.

With over 7000 runs and over 200 first class wickets, his experience will be vital for Tamil Union but it is highly doubtful if his consistent performances in domestic cricket will be rewarded with a national call-up at the age of 32. He is another player in the long list of players to leave Chilaw Marians this season.

Isuru Udana

Unfortunately, the list keeps lengthening for Chilaw Marians who will struggle to defend their title this season. Isuru Udana is another player to have fallen out and he will bolster an already strong Tamil Union outfit.

Udana has been a regular for Sri Lanka in T20 cricket in the recent past and has been involved with plenty of franchise cricket around the world.

It is hard to think of him making a Test appearance for Sri Lanka but is a valuable asset in any form of white ball cricket. His experience with the ball will no doubt be useful for Tamil Union while his always improving batting might be something to watch out for this season.

Suranga Lakmal

This has come as a bit of a surprise but the experienced Sri Lanka seamer – who went on to captain Sri Lanka in Tests –  has made a move to Sri Lanka Ports Authority.

He will be a big miss for Tamil Union while the Ports Authority who had a good season last time around, will look to push hard as a title contender.

However, with Sri Lanka set to your New Zealand and Australia, Lakmal may well miss most parts of the domestic tournament.