Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) has announced a list of 19 centrally contracted players for the year 2022. According to the Financial Times, the board has also offered a contract to ten domestic cricketers for the same period, with categories ranging from A1 to C2.
The players belonging to the A1 category are Test skipper Dimuth Karunaratne, Dhananjaya de Silva, Dushmantha Chameera, and Wanindu Hasaranga. The C2 category, which is the lowest, includes Niroshan Dickwella, Danushka Gunathilaka, and Kusal Mendis.
All three faced severe bans for breaking bio-secure protocols during the tour of England last year. According to SLC CEO Ashley de Silva, all the cricketers have signed contracts, which is in contrast to last year’s that created a controversy.
Introduced by the Sports Minister in consultation with the Director of Cricket and the National Selection Committee, the performance-based contracts triggered a dispute between the players and the board.
Sri Lanka’s players are grouped in the following categories:
- A1 – Dimuth Karunaratne, Dhananjaya de Silva, Dushmantha Chameera, and Wanindu Hasaranga.
- B1 – Pathum Nissanka, Lahiru Thirimanne, Dasun Shanaka, Dinesh Chandimal, Kusal Perera, Angelo Mathews.
- B2 – Lasith Embuldeniya, Ramesh Mendis, Charith Asalanka
- C1 – Vishwa Fernando, Avishka Fernando, Chamika Karunaratne.
- Domestic Players – Praveen Jayawickrama, Oshada Fernando, Bhanuka Rajapaksa, Lakshan Sandakan, Maheesh Theekshana, Nuwan Pradeep, Binura Fernando, Lahiru Kumara, Minod Bhanuka, Kamindu Mendis.
- C2 – Niroshan Dickwella, Danushka Gunathilaka, and Kusal Mendis.
The Asian cricketing country’s recent international results haven’t been too encouraging. Sri Lanka lost the five-match T20 series to Australia comprehensively by a margin of 4-1. Following the results Down Under, they endured a winless tour of India across three T20s and a couple of Tests.
Nevertheless, Karunaratne earned a lot of respect for scoring a century in the pink-ball Test against a world-class Indian bowling attack. They will face Bangladesh in a two-match Test series, starting in mid-May.
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