Graham Ford steps down as Sri Lanka head coach

SOUTHAMPTON, ENGLAND - JULY 04:  Graham Ford and Danushka Gunathilaka of Sri Lanka during the Sri Lanka nets session at Ageas Bowl on July 4, 2016 in Southampton, England.  (Photo by Tom Shaw/Getty Images)
Graham Ford was appointed as the head coach of the Sri Lankan team in 2016
Rupin Kale

What’s the story?

Graham Ford has stepped down as Sri Lanka’s head coach, ending his second tenure with the side. Nic Pothas, the fielding coach of the side, is set to take over as the interim coach for Sri Lanka’s five-match ODI series against Zimbabwe, which is scheduled to start from June 30.

"It's been a privilege to work with these talented young men over the past 15 months. Their passion for the sport is inspiring, as is indeed the nation's," Ford said.

Sri Lanka Cricket Board President Thilanga Sumathipala said, “We have to thank Fordy for his invaluable contribution to Sri Lanka cricket. He joined us at a time where we were quoted by the ICC as being on the 'verge of suspension' and at a time where things were volatile and uncertain, Ford had faith in us and has given us his fullest support.”

Ford signed the SLCB contract 15 months ago and had mixed results with the team. Sumathipala confirmed that the decision was taken mutually after careful consideration by both the parties.

In case you didn’t know...

Ford was appointed as the coach of Sri Lanka in February 2016. His tenure started on a winning note as Sri Lanka whitewashed Australia in a three-Test series at home.

However, Sri Lanka crashed out of the group stage of the ICC World Twenty20 2016 and were whitewashed in Tests as well as ODIs on their tour of South Africa.

This month, they couldn’t make it past the first round of the ICC Champions Trophy 2017.

The details

The resignation was handled gracefully by both Ford and SLCB, as Ford stated that he would always have a piece of his heart with Sri Lankan cricket. The SLC President said that the decision was taken after careful consideration from both parties and that they are confident in its propriety.

What’s next?

PROVIDENCE, GUYANA - MAY 03:  Dinesh Chandimal of Sri Lanka in action during the ICC T20 World Cup Group B match between Sri Lanka and Zimbabwe at the Guyana National Stadium Cricket Ground on May 3, 2010 in Providence, Guyana.  (Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images)
The Zimbabwe tour of Sri Lanka will commence on June 30

Sri Lanka will host Zimbabwe for a five-match series, which would be followed by a one-off Test against them. They will then host India for 3 Tests, 5 ODIs, and a one-off T20 match.

The new head coach for the Angelo Mathews-led team will be announced before that series begins.

Also read: Full schedule of India’s tour of Sri Lanka

Author’s take

Teams seem to be putting their foot down after the Champions Trophy with respect to their support staff. The cricket boards across the world will now look forward to the preparations for the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019.

Edited by Staff Editor


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