Sri Lankan pacer Suranga Lakmal is set to retire from international cricket after the upcoming tour of India. The right-arm seamer informed Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) of his decision on Wednesday.
Lakmal, 34, made his international debut against India in Nagpur in 2009, a game his side went on to win. His Test debut came within a year against the West Indies in Colombo, while the T20I cap called against England in 2011.
Lakmal led Sri Lanka in five Tests, all played in 2018. The pacesetter had a successful stint as substitute captain, leading Sri Lanka to a 2-0 win over South Africa at home and a series win over the West Indies in Barbados – with his team becoming the first Asian team to win a game at the Kensington Oval.
The right-arm pacemaker has played 68 tests so far, with two more potential test caps to be added in India. He has 168 Test wickets so far with an average of 36 and a strike rate of 72. In 86 ODIs, Lakmal has 109 wickets with an economy rate of just over 5.
In a resignation letter sent to Sri Lanka Cricket, Suranga Lakmal said he was “absolutely delighted” to be associated with Sri Lanka Cricket, which had helped him in his professional and personal development.
Ashley De Silva, CEO of SLC said: “We take this opportunity to wish Lakmal the very best in his future endeavors and look forward to seeing him perform for the country during the Sri Lanka Tour of India should the selection consider him for the trip.”
“Lakmal has made an outstanding contribution to Sri Lanka cricket, delivering some memorable spells during his national career and his services will be fondly remembered,” added De Silva.
Lakmal was also the first cricketer from Hambantota district to play international cricket for Sri Lanka. He was a member of the Sri Lankan team that won the 2014 Men’s T20 World Cup in Bangladesh.
Lakmal is the first player from Hambantota district to represent Sri Lanka. He also joined the likes of Kapil Dev and Imran Khan in catching a wicket from the first ball thrown at a new test site – in his case the Pallekele International Cricket Stadium.