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Arjuna Ranatunga lashes out at Sanath Jayasuriya for squandering talents

Ranatunga also took a jibe at Sangakkara and Jayawardena

Arjuna Ranatunga
Arjuna Ranatunga. (Photo by ISHARA S.KODIKARA/AFP/Getty Images)

Former Sri Lankan captain Arjuna Ranatunga recently lashed out at the selector of Sri Lankan Cricket team, Sanath Jayasuriya for squandering raw talent in the struggling Sri Lankan set up post retirement of the Kumar Sangakkara, Mahela Jayawardena, and Tillakaratne Dilshan.

After Mahela (Jayawardene) and Kumar (Sangakkara), the best players I have seen are Lahiru Thirimanne and Dinesh Chandimal. The selectors have already destroyed one and they are in the process of destroying the other. I would like to urge them to stop killing natural talent. Why we are struggling is because we have mismanaged our talents,

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Citing the examples of Marvan Atapattu and Sanath Jayasuriya himself. Ranatunga tried to make a valid point about them provided with constant backing keeping an eye on their potential, despite a slow start in their cricketing careers. Ranatunga claimed that Sri Lanka has already ruined the career of Lahiru Thirimanne and are now on course to ruin the career of Dinesh Chandimal, who was dropped for the series against Zimbabwe post a dismal Champions Trophy.

“These young players need to be protected. Marvan (Atapattu) scored five ducks in his first six innings. But we knew he had the talent and backed him to the hilt. Look at what he achieved in the end. He retired having scored 5500 Test runs, which is more than what I managed,” quoted Arjuna Ranatunga according to Cricbuzz. He then continued by highlighting the fact that Chandimal’s record at 27 is greater than that of greats such as Sanga or De Silva, and the talented right-hander was unfairly dropped in the series which would have given him much needed confidence.

Ranatunga also took a jibe at Sangakkara and Jayawardena

“I am disappointed that Sanath has failed to protect younger players and build teams for the future. Raw talent is rare and Sanath should stop killing raw talent. Chandimal has done extremely well for his age. He has four ODI hundreds at the age of 27, which is more than what Kumar Sangakkara or Aravinda de Silva had at that age. He had a bad Champions Trophy, but he is too good a player to be snubbed,” quipped the World-Cup winning captain of Sri Lanka.

Ranatunga then went on to state that constant chopping and changing in the batting order hasn’t helped his cause either. “The current Zimbabwe series is the sort of ideal opportunity for him to get his confidence back/ They have been making Chandimal to bat at number four, five, six and everywhere. Let him settle down at one position and he will be an outstanding player for you,” concluded Arjuna Ranatunga. He then blamed Jayawardena and Sangakkara for not giving an opportunity to the youngsters to bat higher up the order during the latter half of their careers.

“In my career, when I reached a stage where I could take up responsibility, people like Duleep (Mendis) and Roy (Dias) dropped down the batting order and gave Aravinda (De Silva) and myself the opportunity to bat higher up the order. That made life much easier for us. Then we did the same when guys like Sanga and Mahela came along. But unfortunately that tradition wasn’t followed. Sanga always batted at number three and Mahela always batted at number four,” concluded the dissapointed former Sri Lankan captain.

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