Hasaranga quits Test cricket at 26; franchise cricket takes precedence


Sri Lanka all-rounder Wanindu Hasaranga has retired from Test cricket at age 26. He is understood to have made this decision in order to be more available for franchise cricket tournaments.

Hasaranga has not been a regular member of Sri Lanka’s Test squad over the last two years, but has played four Tests. He had largely failed to impress with the ball in those matches, taking four wickets at an average of 100.75, though he did hit a half-century in South Africa.

In any case, Hasaranga had recently been included in some wider training groups ahead of Test series, and then not picked for the Test squad itself.

His involvement in training in Sri Lanka had prevented him from taking up franchise cricket offers. He had, for example pulled out of Major League Cricket in the weeks before the tournament was to commence.

Although according to the Sri Lanka Cricket release, the reason Hasaranga retires from Tests is in order “to prolong his career as a limited-overs specialist”, Hasaranga has no history with long-term injury.

Unlike with, say, Thisara Perera, who had also attempted to retire from Test cricket in his 20s, but had been told to hold off by Sri Lanka Cricket, Hasaranga’s discussions with SLC are believed to have been cordial.

Essentially, the board no longer sees him as a potential Test player, and is happy for him to pursue other opportunities so long as he remains available for Sri Lanka’s white-ball games.

“We will accept his decision and are confident that Hasaranga will be a vital part of our white-ball program going forward,” Ashley De Silva, CEO of SLC, said.

Overall, Hasaranga played 44 first-class games, picking up 102 wickets. He also has three first-class centuries and 19 half-centuries.

Hasaranga has so far represented Sri Lanka in 48 ODIs and 58 T20Is and is a key member in the limited-overs set-up.

Hasaranga is currently captaining his Lanka Premier League side B-Love Kandy, and will be part of Sri Lanka’s forthcoming Asia Cup and World Cup campaigns. (ESPNcricinfo)

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