Lankans ready for T-20 challenges
If the weather gods smiles and leaves a shiny corridor during the next five weeks, Sri Lanka is ready to take up the ICC’s World T-20 championships on its stride. The Secretary Sri Lanka Cricket Nishantha Ranatunga speaking to the Sunday Times said “It was a huge advantage to us to have the Sri Lanka Premier League as a precursor, where the country was involved in a similar tournament that also had foreign players involved. We made the maximum use of the opportunity and got the entire T-20 World Cup Office involved.
“It was not only the office staff who got the exposure. Even the baggage boys and the ground staff who will be involved T-20 world cup tournament got an opportunity get used to the impending situation.”The SLC Secretary further said that the SLPL also helped them to the extent of uncovering two talented players who if not could have gone unnoticed.
Ranatunga added “We were fortunate that the infrastructure was already in place as a result of the work that we had put in during the 2011 World Cup Tournament and it was only about 20% of the work left for this tournament. That was a huge benefit. However the real challenge lies here. During the 2011 World Cup only a few teams arrived in Sri Lanka and only a segment of the matches took place in the island. Now we have to conduct the entire tournament in Sri Lanka and security wise and logistically it is a huge challenge, but we feel that we are upto it”.
When asked about the financial impediments that hampered the SLC and how they are managing with the hotel bookings and so forth the reply was “We have cleared most of out debts. When this administration took over the salaries of the SLC workers were not paid and the players’ payments had not been settled. Even those hurdles have been cleared.
The hotel bookings for the teams and officials are on line and we have no problems about that. The only drawback that we would have to look into would be the rain management with the ongoing weather patterns. With proper cover-management at the venues we must strive to the most amount of matches played during the tournament.
Though the tournament proper gets off the ground on September 18, most of the teams who will be featured at this tournament will be engaged in a series of preparatory games from this week.
SLC approves cricket structural changes
The proposed structural changes in Sri Lankan domestic cricket for clubs and schools were approved by the Executive Committee of Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) last evening. As the Sunday Times published earlier the Premier League inter-club tournament will have 11 club teams and a team each from Kurunegala, Kandy and Galle. These changes will come into effect immediately. The schools programme will go on with each school not playing more than 16 matches per season inclusing the traditional ‘Big Matches’.
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