5 Sri Lankan bowlers who had a great first-class career but didn't shine in Test cricket
The Sri Lankan cricket team first arrived on the big stage after they stunned Australia in the 1996 World Cup final and became champions of the world after going into the tournament as underdogs. Since then, several players have emerged from the island nation that made them a superpower in the cricket world.
From the limited overs format to the Test cricket, the legacy went on and the nation now stands amongst the top cricketing powers in the world. Sri Lanka have developed several cricketers who have gone on to leave an indelible mark on the sport in all formats of the game.
But there have been a few who could not do well in the longest format of the game in spite of having good records at the first class level.
Here, we take a look at such players who failed to make it big in the Test arena:
#5 Ajantha Mendis
The right-hander burst onto the scene first in the Asia Cup final of 2008 when he picked up 6 wickets for just 13 runs against India and single-handedly won the game for his side. It was followed by the Test series between India and Sri Lanka hosted by the latter where he again spun a web around the batsmen with his mystery deliveries.
(Video Courtesy: cricketanytime2 YouTube Channel)
A lot was expected of him in all the formats of the game but after his mystery was unfolded, he did not remain the same threat especially in Test cricket. He played 19 Tests in which he managed to bag 70 wickets at an average of 34.77.
Contrary to his Test record, he holds tremendous numbers in first-class cricket having picked 305 wickets to his name in 69 matches. His average of 22.98 is way below his Test average. Though he is still active in the game, his Test career seems to have reached a dead end considering his current form.