Sanath Jayasuriya Leads Committee to Investigate Sri Lanka's Failure
Sri Lanka's direct WC qualification dream ended after 2-0 loss to New Zealand
In a bid to scrutinise the root cause behind Sri Lanka's failure to clinch direct qualification for the highly anticipated ODI World Cup, the Minister of Sports has commissioned a consultative committee to investigate the matter.
This inquisition was triggered following Sri Lanka's dismayingly lacklustre performance against New Zealand in the third ODI held in Hamilton last month, culminating in a disastrous 0-2 series loss.
The technical committee is chaired by the illustrious Sanath Jayasuriya, who played an integral role in Sri Lanka's triumphant 1996 World Cup campaign. The legendary batter, along with four other former national players - Farveez Maharoof, Asantha De Mel, Charith Senanayake and Kapila Wijegunawardena constituted the first public appearance of the committee on Tuesday.
Sanath Jayasuriya spoke on the committee's objectives
Jayasuriya articulated the committee's objectives, declaring that the coaching staff must be held accountable for their inability to secure automatic qualification. He further added that the coaching management must present the panel with a comprehensive plan to rectify their shortcomings in the short term.
“We will ask the coaching management the reasons for not winning the automatic qualification,” Jayasuriya told reporters.
The southpaw also commended the talented pool of players, urging that they must be instilled with the necessary confidence to execute their potential.
“They must also give us a short term plan to improve things. These are a talented bunch of players and they should be given the necessary confidence,” concluded the erstwhile cricketer.
Sri Lanka, who won the 1996 World Cup and are also two-time finalists in 2007 & 2011, have been a regular fixture in every World Cup since 1975. However, their hopes for direct qualification vanished after their unfortunate defeat to New Zealand, failing to elevate their standings in the ICC Men's Cricket World Cup Super League table.
As a result, Sri Lanka is now obligated to compete in the qualifying tournament held in Zimbabwe between June and July, where only two qualifying slots are available for the final round. The tournament will witness a highly contested battle between Sri Lanka, Zimbabwe, West Indies, South Africa, and Ireland.
The ODI World Cup, a highly coveted cricketing tournament, is scheduled to be hosted in India in October-November this year. The committee, with Jayasuriya at the helm, is expected to provide a comprehensive report of their findings, thereby ensuring that Sri Lanka's cricketing ambitions are not compromised.