Sri Lanka Emerging team leaves for historic England tour

Sri Lanka Emerging Team Tour of England 2022

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An 18-member Sri Lankan Men’s Emerging squad left the island for England on the 1st of May to play three four-day matches followed by three T20 encounters.  

Nipun Dananjaya, the former Sri Lanka U19 skipper who will lead the four-day team, feels this is a great opportunity for the youngsters to gain experience by playing in England as they continue to grow for bigger roles in the international arena.

“Playing in England in this juncture of our careers will do a world of good for our future. As a captain, I’m very happy about this team and for this opportunity.”  Red-ball captain Dananjaya said before leaving the island.

Dhananjaya Lakshan, the fast bowling allrounder from Colts CC, who is also a Sri Lankan ODI Cap will be the skipper for the shorter format. He spoke about the importance of settling into the UK conditions and the pitches quickly.

“Acclimatizing to the conditions will be the main challenge. However, for the T20s it will be a lot easier since we would have already played three 4-day games by the time we get to the T20s.The T20 skipper Lakshan said.

Former Sri Lankan all-rounder Ruwan Kalpage has been involved in the Sri Lankan coaching setup for more than two decades in different roles. In his newest role moulding the next generation of national players, he believes tours like this one is the way forward in breeding the next generation of Sri Lankan Cricketers and preparing these players for various conditions around the globe should be the long-term plan.

“We have been training as a squad since the beginning of April at Khettarama. The boys are eager to do well in England. Also, the biggest positive is that all these players have been playing very well in the recently concluded National Super League and the Major Clubs Emerging Tournament.” Head Coach of the Sri Lanka Emerging Team, Ruwan Kalpage said.

The 18 member squad was selected based on the performances at the National Super League and the Emerging Tournament and only 2 out of these 18 players have previous experience playing the international level (Dhananjaya Lakshan & Ashen Bandara).

The batting department is led by the four day skipper Nipun Dananjaya and it is further strengthened by the addition of batters such as right-hander Avishka Perera, the highest runs scorer during the Emerging Tournament. Avishka Tharindu who ended up with a staggering average of 239 in the Emerging Tournament, Nuwanindu Fernando, Lasith Croospulle and Nishan Madushka are some of the other batters to keep an eye on.

When it comes to the bowling front, the team has a good mixture of pace and spin with the likes of Dilum Sudheera,  the left arm spinner who took 52 wickets in just 5 matches with an average below 11 during the Emerging Tournament leading the attack. He will be accompanied by off-spinner Ashian Daniel who took 16 wickets during the NSL. The seamers will be Nipun Ransika, Udith Madushan & Nipun Malinga.

Dunith Wellalage, the star player and skipper of the Sri Lankan U19 World Cup campaign earlier this year, is joined by his teammate, left-arm seamer Yasiru Rodrigo as the two schoolboy cricketers in the touring party.

The first Four-Day fixture will begin on the 6th of May in Kent.

Sri Lanka Emerging Team for England Tour 2022 – Nipun Dananjaya (SSC – 4 Day Captain), Dhananjaya Lakshan (Colts CC – T20 Captain), Lasith Croospulle (Ace Capital CC), Avishka Perera (Colts CC), Santhush Gunathilaka (Tamil Union C & AC), Avishka Tharindu (Ragama CC), Nuwanidu Fernando (SSC), Nishan Madushka (Ragama CC), Ashen Bandara (Police SC), Dunith Wellalage (St. Joseph’s College), Dilum Sudeera (Tamil Union C & AC), Ashain Daniel (NCC), Nipun Malinga (Ragama CC), Nipun Ransika (NCC), Manelkar De Silva (Sebastianites C & AC), Yasiru Rodrigo (S. Thomas’ College/Lankan CC), Udith Madushan (Saracens SC), Amshi De Silva (NCC)

Schedule

DATE MATCH VENUE
06th to 09th May 01st Four Day Canterbury – Kent
13th to 16th May 02nd  Four Day Ageas Bowl – Hampshire
20th to 23rd May 03rd  Four Day Guildford CC – Surrey
25th May 01st T20 Kia Oval – Surrey
27th May 02nd T20 The Cooper ACG – Somerset
29th May 03rd T20 Bristol    County   Ground   – Gloucestershire