Sri Lankan legend Sanath Jayasuriya was named head coach of the Mulgrave Cricket Club in Australia on Friday, joining former teammates Tillakaratne Dilshan and Upul Tharanga. This coaching stint will be a comeback in the cricketing fraternity for Jayasuriya after being banned by the ICC in February 2019 for breaching the anti-corruption code.
The Sri Lankan veteran will be in charge of the Mulgrave Cricket Club in Victoria’s Eastern Cricket Association for the 2021/22 season, as confirmed by the club. Jayasuriya will accompany fellow Sri Lankans Tillakaratne Dilshan and Upul Tharanga, who have signed with the club as players.
Jayasuriya’s inclusion in the group will be a significant boost for them. He will also feel at ease collaborating with his former mates and this appears to be a good mix for all the involved parties.
“We are thrilled to have Sanath at the club to coach and work with our players, providing a fantastic wealth of experience for our seniors and juniors,” posted Mulgrave Cricket Club on their Facebook page.
Role of Dilshan in securing the services of Sanath Jayasuriya
Mulgrave president Malin Pullenayegam revealed that T Dilshan, who played alongside Sanath Jayasuriya in the Road Safety World Series for the Sri Lanka Legends team earlier this year, was essential in securing his services.
“We’ve been having a chat with him for a while through obviously Dilshan as a contact. They caught up during the legends series and started having a few discussions. Dilshan opened the door for us there, and it was a fantastic opportunity that was presented to us,” said Malin Pullenayegam to Melbourne Herald Sun.
Pullenayegam also added that the experience of Sanath Jayasuriya will add an immense value within the side and will give exposure to the standards of international cricket to the youngsters.
“We just had to work on it and come to an agreement, and we have. 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,” added Malin Pullenayegam.
Jayasuriya featured in 586 matches for Sri Lanka in all three formats of the game, scoring 42 centuries and claiming 440 wickets. He was also a member of the Sri Lankan team that won the World Cup in 1996.