Sanath Jayasuriya to coach Melbourne club after end of ICC ban

ICC banned Sanath Jayasuriya from all cricket for two years in February 2019.

ICC banned Sanath Jayasuriya from all cricket for two years in February 2019.
BIRMINGHAM, ENGLAND – JUNE 23: Sri Lanka captain Angelo Mathews speaks with Chairman of Selectors Sanath Jayasuriya during a nets session at Edgbaston on June 23, 2016 in Birmingham, England. (Photo by Gareth Copley/Getty Images)

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Former Sri Lanka all-rounder Sanath Jayasuriya will be returning to coaching duties after serving his two-year ban. In February 2019, the International Cricket Council (ICC) banned Jayasuriya’s participation in any professional cricket activities after the southpaw was found guilty of breaching the ICC anti-corruption code. He was charged with refusal to cooperate with investigators concerning corruption in Sri Lanka. The charges also included obstructing or delaying the investigation.

Nevertheless, the ban was uplifted in November last year, and the 1996 World Cup winner became eligible to resume his cricket-related duties. Jayasuriya will mark his return to cricket with a coaching stint at Melbourne club Mulgrave. The 51-year-old will join his former teammates Tillakaratne Dilshan and Upul Tharanga, who are part of the Eastern Cricket Association competition.

Tillakaratne Dilshan opened the door for us: Mulgrave president Malin Pullenayegam

As per a report in the Herald Sun, it was Dilshan who convinced the legendary all-rounder to take up the job. “Dilshan opened the door for us there, and it was a fantastic opportunity that was presented to us. We just had to work on it and come to an agreement, and we have,” said Mulgrave president Malin Pullenayegam.

“I think it’s a great opportunity for our young guys to know what international cricket standards are. That kind of exposure from a young age just elevates the standard of cricket they’ll be playing,” he added.

Dilshan will be playing for Mulgraves alongside former Sri Lanka teammate Upul Tharanga, who retired from international cricket earlier this year. The duo has played a lot of cricket with Jayasuriya, and this should help the Melbourne-based club in the competition.

Meanwhile, Jayasuriya is regarded as one of the finest all-rounders to have ever stepped onto the cricket field. The southpaw revolutionized the role of an opener with his attacking brand of cricket. On top of that, he was a brilliant left-arm spinner who gave a tough time to many prominent batting stars worldwide.

The southpaw also played a crucial role in taking Sri Lanka to the 1996 World Cup. Jayasuriya eventually bid farewell to international cricket in 2011, and a great era came to an end. After that, he also served Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) as a chief selector. Now that his ban is uplifted, it would be interesting to see if he again takes any role in SLC.