Sri Lanka Cricket CEO Ashley de Silva
- SLC takes policy decision to go with foreign coach for Under 19 national cricket team
By Sa’adi Thawfeeq
Sri Lanka Cricket will appoint a new head coach for the national women’s cricket team on an interim basis, after its Executive Committee decided not to renew the contract of current head coach Harsha de Silva, which ends in August.
“We will initially look at a local coach to carry out operations for an interim period of about six months until the end of December. We will also assess the person’s performance and give him an opportunity to see how he will perform. In the meantime, we will also explore the possibility if we need to replace and look for some other resource, a person who can handle that area,” said Sri Lanka Cricket CEO Ashley de Silva.
“We have been having internal discussions and in the next couple of days we will take a decision and make an announcement,” he said.
De Silva said the performance of the current coach Harsha de Silva was examined by the ExCo before a final decision was taken.
“We looked at his performance. We took everything into consideration the number of tours he appeared during his time and how many wins and losses before the ExCo took a decision,” explained De Silva.
Harsha de Silva has had two stints as women’s head coach from 2010-13 and again from 2018-20.
In his last period, Sri Lanka participated in two Women’s World T20 World Cups but failed to get beyond the group stage, beating only Bangladesh on both occasions. The overall record for the period is two wins from 18 T20Is and one win from 1
Ashley de Silva said that Sri Lanka Cricket was totally focused on developing women’s cricket and added: “Within the next year or two we will definitely see an improvement in that area too.”
“Manoj Kariyawasam will overlook the women’s cricket area. He will co-ordinate things with the ICC, he will work with the Schools Cricket Association in order to take the game to the grassroot level,” said De Silva.
“He will also look into the logistical part of it, the women’s national team and the development squads. The coaches would be reporting to him directly. He will be the operational person in that area.”
De Silva stated that the SLC had taken a policy decision to go with a foreign coach for the Under 19 national cricket team.
“We will basically interview some coaches, about five to six people have shown interest, and we have shortlisted three to four people with whom we have had discussions so far. By the end of the month or so, we will finalise it, because currently nothing is happening at the moment. We will recruit a person, shortlist him and wait until the situation improves,” said De Silva.
The coaches who had shown interest, the CEO said, were from South Africa, England, Australia and the subcontinent.
Former Sri Lanka captain Hashan Tillakaratne, whose contract expired with the Under 19 World Cup in South Africa early this year, has been upgraded to overlook other areas, according to De Silva. “He will be working at the high performance centre,” he said.