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Captaincy was my dream and it has come true: Thisara Perera

Tharanga has chosen to opt out of the 3-match T20I series owing to security concerns in the last T20I which is slated to be held at the Gaddafi Stadium, Lahore.

Thisara Perera
Thisara Perera. (Photo by Francois Nel/Getty Images)

It’s a dream come true for Thisara Perera as he’s been named as the skipper of the Sri Lankan T20I squad against Pakistan in the absence of Upul Tharanga. This makes him the ninth individual to lead the Lankan team in the shortest format of the game. Tharanga has chosen to opt out of the 3-match T20I series owing to security concerns in the last T20I which is slated to be held at the Gaddafi Stadium, Lahore.

Considering that the Lankan team was a victim of a horrific terror attack in Lahore back in 2009, several of the players had expressed concerns over participating in a game at the venue. Sri Lanka pace spearhead, Lasith Malinga had even sent in a request to Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) to form separate teams for the ODIs and the T20Is. However, the plea was rejected to dispel the notion of players being able to choose matches they want to be a part of.

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Thisara Perera overjoyed at being named skipper

As reported by Cricbuzz, an ecstatic Perera said, “I am really happy. I’m really proud of myself, because everyone has a dream to be a captain anywhere. This was my dream, and it has come true. I’m really happy at the moment.” While they are trailing the 5-match ODI series by 0-4 against Pakistan, Perera is optimistic about the T20 series having a more positive outcome. The first two T20Is will be held in Abu Dhabi on October 26 and 27 respectively, followed by the third and final one on October 29 to conclude the tour.

When asked about his thoughts on the team composition for the T20 games, the 28-year old said, “I’m happy with the squad because everyone can bat and bowl. In T20 matches we need part-time bowlers and big hitters. I think this team we can do something special this series.” Perera seemed unperturbed at the prospect of big shots of the game not being a part of his team. “Yes, actually we had a good bunch of players in the country. Never mind because I got new talents. Hopefully, we will do our best for our country with my team,” he said.

The three T20Is played out between the World XI side and Pakistan in September had ensured tight security for players and been the first step towards restoration of faith in Pakistan’s viability as an international host of the game. Perera, who was a part of the star-studded World XI side, said, “I was really happy with that security because we went for a three-match series. Unluckily we lost the series, but we were really impressed by security because everyone enjoyed (themselves). I think 7-8 countries participated there. I’m really satisfied with the security.”

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