Former Sri Lankan wicketkeeper Pubudu Dassanayake, who also represented Canada national team, has been appointed as the coach for the USA cricket team by ICC Americas. Along with Dassanayake, the regional ICC body has also appointed Eric Parthen to preside over the Project Manager post, in a move that is expected to help the cricket set-up in the USA grow.
The 46-year old Dassanayake made his debut for Sri Lanka in 1993, but could only play for the island nation till the end of 1994, representing them in a total of 16 ODIs and 11 Tests. In the latter part of his playing career, he moved to Canada to play for them in 2005 and 2006, also captaining them in the Intercontinental Cup in both years. Canada lost to Ireland in the finals of the 06-07 edition.
Post retirement, Dassanayake made his foray into coaching, and held the post for Canada from 2007-2011. Following that, he coached Nepal, succeeding another Sri Lankan, Roy Dias, at the helm. He coached the team from 2011-2015, after having secured his Level III coaching qualifications from Australia. Under Dassanayake, Nepal qualified for their first major ICC tournament, the World T20 in 2014, where they beat Afghanistan and Hong Kong.
Dassanayake was quoted as saying: "I am delighted to have been given the opportunity to coach USA, especially at what is an exciting time for USA cricket. I believe there is a great deal of talent here; it will just require hard work from everyone involved to get the best out of these players and hopefully see US cricket progress to higher honours”.
Eric Parthen, the new Project manager, has previously served important posts at USA Boxing and USA Taekwondo. He has an experience of over 20 years in various roles as a sports administrator. He said: “I am thrilled to be joining ICC Americas at such a pivotal point in its history. My focus will be on working with the whole cricket family here in the US and creating a sustainable structure to allow cricket to flourish at all levels”.
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