Dharmadasa and Co. start new innings at SLC

Thursday, 18 April 2013 00:01 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

By David Ebert

The new Sri Lanka Cricket Executive Committee headed by former Interim Committee President Jayantha Dharmadasa and his team were elected as the country’s top cricketing administration at the elections held at the BMICH yesterday and will hold office for the next two years.

The votes were cast in a secret ballot for the first time and supervised by officials from the country’s Election Department on request from the administration to ensure transparency in the process.

The new Board – consisting of Dharmadasa as President, Vice Presidents K. Mathiv-anan and Mohan De Silva, Secretary Nishantha Ranatunga and Treasurer Nuski Mohamed – took up their appointments yesterday amidst a large gathering of well-wishers and club representatives who joined in traditional religious ceremonies to invoke blessings on the new administration before they officially began work.

Delivering the administration’s opening statement at the event, Secretary Ranatunga thanked all present for their support in holding the elections and called for the support of all opposing camps to unite for the betterment and development of the sport.

“I would like to emphasise our new President’s thinking where even right up to yesterday we were faced with divided camps but from the outset it was his vision to take the sport of cricket forward with the support of all the stakeholders included. We are here to serve not only the side that won, but to serve the game of cricket as a whole and all its stakeholders.” Ranatunga commented that the new Board would respect and look at including views from all those involved in the administration of the sport and look to create a more inclusive and focused strategy to develop the country’s cricketing future.

The newly-elected President Dharmadasa, speaking to the Daily FT on what the new Board’s priorities would be for the next two years, said: “I think the most important thing for us to focus on at the moment is getting our team’s rankings up in all three versions of the game. As you know, most countries have three different teams for all the formats and maybe that would be the way we should go as well in order to get the team up in the rankings in all three formats.”

Responding to a query as to which format would require the most attention under the present circumstances, Dharmadasa in a lighter vein stated: “I am an old man and a traditionalist so I would definitely say test cricket, but it will have to be done using a proper structure from the beginning, which we are prepared for.”

Dharmadasa also said that the Board would be looking into continuing the development of new talent as has been done in the past few years of the administration’s previous tenure with the improvement of the team’s rankings in mind.