“True the team had a lean period, but my committee and I are hopeful that our boys will bounce back under the leadership of new captain Dasun Shanaka. We are here to facilitate the boys with the best possible ways and means with the support of the Cricket Board. The team initially had various issues and we were able to resolve them amicably. It is left for them to get into the middle and perform for the country by concentrating on the game and forgetting the past.”
“We all know the selectors are trying to build a young brigade with an intention of forming a formidable squad for the future. We too are in agreement. They should play to their potential without observing the other teams in world cricket. We have a young and talented side. In England they played under tough conditions. They have to take the positives from that tour and rejuvenate themselves and put up a better performance by evaluating their mistakes,” added Aravinda speaking to Daily News.
The National team performed below expectations on their England tour, which ended in a series whitewash, losing both the T20 and the ODI series. The National selectors are of the view that with the temporary suspension of three senior cricketers pending an inquiry, Kusal Janith Perera might have to carry an additional burden and exert pressure of keeping wickets while opening the batting, which might disrupt his playing instinct.
Considering these facts, the selectors have opted for Dasun Shanaka to lead the team until the T20 World cup to be held later this year in U.A.E and Oman respectively and release Kusal Janith to concentrate on his batting where on his day can be a match winner.
It is high time for the rest of the players to rally around Shanaka and concentrate on winning the matches for the country. The CCM has formed a pool of 45 to 50 players, which is now the norm with the present pandemic situation. “Yes, we are in agreement that we should have a pool of 45 to 50 players under these unpredictable times in a bio-bubble environment, as anything could happen to players.
The best example is the present England-Pakistan series. The England team almost lost full strength owing to the pandemic, and since they had a back-up plan and players equally good as the main team, they were not only able to play the series, but also win handsomely. Likewise, we too have formed a pool and got some of the senior players into it. This will enable us to have a back-up side to be used at any given time.” de Silva added.
The CCM has requested a comprehensive report on the concluded English tour from Tom Moody, who is still in England. He is likely to submit the report in a few days. They hope to study the report and look into areas which need immediate attention for improved performance, including the coaching and high-performance unit.
Aravinda is also of the view an under-19 pool should be formed, and will consult the selectors and SLC regarding this. He believes commencement of this pool will eventually help the young players have ample time to gel as a team and to gear up for the next World Cup.
When inquired about the possibility of qualifying for the T20 World Cup later this year he said: “We will definitely qualify for that without any issue. We have now set up the structure to run the game without issues. By executing this, there won’t be any future issues and favourable results will follow.”