In a bid to help Sri Lanka regain its lost prestige in the Cricketing arena, in years to come, the Matara District Cricket Association (MDCA) will provide schools in the District and their coaches, with sufficient infrastructure and skills, which have been long overdue.
“If Matara has been able to produce Cricketers of the calibre of Sanath Jayasuriya, J.C. Gamage, Prabath Nissanka, Pramodya Wickremasinghe, Indika de Saram, Tharanga Lakshitha, Suraj Randiv and Kasun Rajitha, who have made the National team in the past, we can do it in the future too,” said MDCA Secretary Prasanna Galappaththi, addressing Masters-in-Charge and Coaches gathered at the HK Dharmadasa Pavilion, Uyanwatta.
“St Servatius College wining the All-island Schools Under (U)-17 Division 1 Cricket Championship this year, proves we possess the talent in Matara,” he added.
“I was Sri Lanka Cricket’s (SLC) District Coach in Matara for a considerable period of time, and am fully aware it is difficult to achieve goals if the DCA is tightfisted. This is another reason the Cricket Development Committee of the newly elected MDCA has decided to help the game at school level, by providing the necessary facilities, including equipment, and also conduct regular training programmes to upgrade the skills and knowledge of all those associated with game in the District with the blessings of the SLC. On our recommendation, in addition to equipment, SLC will be constructing practice nets at every school in the District that participate regularly in the age-group Cricket tournaments conducted by the Sri Lanka Schools Cricket Association (SLSCA),” said Galappaththi.
“We will be scouting for talented players in the District and provide them with specialised coaching. This is to be done at the U-13, U-15, U-17 and U-19 age groups and we will maintain 30-member squads in each age group. The selection process will be fair and transparent at all times.”
Former National Junior Selector Jagath Nandakumara divulged how a potential 15-20-member squad is selected.
He also highlighted the many obstacles that a school cricketer has to overcome, to reach a National pool, which may be the reason for the present downfall at National level.
Coaches and Masters-in-Charge of Cricket were requested to independently answer a questionnaire, which would help the MDCA to identify the shortcomings faced at school level.
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