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Will SLC deviate from hiring foreigners?

Will SLC deviate from hiring foreigners?


  • Stop-gap coach likely for India series


Sri Lanka Cricket is expected to finalise the appointment of a stop-gap coach for the men’s national team shortly, in the aftermath of the non-renewal of the extended two-year contract of Englishman Chris Silverwood, The Daily Morning Sports, reliably understands.

The Ex-English pacer’s original two-year contract was due to expire in April this year but, the sport’s local governing body opted to extend it till the conclusion of the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup in the US and the West Indies.

But, Sri Lanka fared poorly in the showpiece event failing to qualify for its Super Eight for the first time in the tournament’s history and it proved to be the unravelling of Chris Silverwood-the coach.

Sri Lanka’s misery was compounded following the wash-out against Nepal which preceded group stage losses to South Africa and Bangladesh respectively, and victory against unheralded Netherlands only managed to mask their true standing in the format.

Hence, the team’s subpar performance in the Americas was always going to be the last hurrah for the outgoing coach, as the SLC has already decided to sever its contract with the Yorkshireman.

Meanwhile, it is left to be seen whether the SLC will deviate from its long-held tradition of hiring foreigners to train the national team across all formats, by contracting a former local player with a sound coaching pedigree.

It is believed that the SLC will opt for a stop-gap coach during India’s white-ball tour to Sri Lanka which is due to commence on 27 July, after which they are to decide on appointing a permanent head coach.

Speculation is also rife in cricketing circles that the SLC will again choose to hire another foreigner with vast international coaching expertise to replace Silverwood, with the latter having taken over from Mickey Arthur in 2021.

But, only time will tell whether the SLC will be successful in its efforts to entice a well-known foreigner to the coaching post, on the back of the national team’s abysmal performances in all formats in the recent past.

The high-water mark of the 49-year-old’s coaching stint with Sri Lanka was their T-20 Asia Cup triumph in Dubai in 2022 and the drawn Test series against Australia at home in the same season.

The Lankans also won the qualifying round tournament ahead of last year’s Men’s ODI World Cup in India under Silverwood’s watch.

But, since then their fortunes started to plummet in stunning fashion while suffering a 302-run hiding to Rohit Sharma’s team in the ODI World Cup and  culminating with the exit from the first round of the ongoing T-20 World Cup. 

The nadir of Silverwood’s coaching tenure with the Islanders was Sri Lanka being shot out for 50-their second lowest total in an ODI against India in Colombo last September and in the run-up to the World Cup in India. 

Also being bundled out for their lowest ever T20 score of 77 in their opening group clash against South Africa in New York did nothing to boost Silverwood’s coaching credentials, after he had reportedly drawn a monthly sum of $ 30.000 (Rs. 9 million) for his services.  

Since 1996, Sri Lanka have been coached by seven Australians, three South Africans and two Englishmen, with the rest being ex-local players.    

India are set to play three ODIs and a similar number of T20 games in their first visit to the island-nation since 2021.

The list of head coaches of Sri Lanka since 1996

Dave Whatmore-Australia (1995-96) 

Bruce Yardley-Australia (1997-98)

Roy Dias-Sri Lanka (1998-99)

Dave Whatmore-Australia (1999-2003)

John Dyson-Australia (2003-05)

Tom Moody-Australia (2005-07)

Trevor Bayliss-Australia (2007-11)

Stuart Law-Australia (2011)

Rumesh Rathnayaka-Sri Lanka (2011)

Geoff Marsh-Australia (2011-12)

Graham Ford-South Africa (2012-13)

Paul Farbrace-England (2013-14)

Marvan Atapattu-Sri Lanka (2014-15)

Jerome Jayaratna-Sri Lanka (2015-16)

Graham Ford-South Africa (2016-17)

Nick Pothas-South Africa (2017)

Chandika Hathurisingha-Sri Lanka (2017-19)

Mickey Arthur-South Africa (2019-21)

Rumesh Rathnayaka-Sri Lanka (2022)

Chris Silverwood-England (2022-24)



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