Tillakaratne Dilshan feels Dhananjaya de Silva is his successor
- Tillakaratne Dilshan has played 87 Tests and 330 ODIs for Sri Lanka.
Sri Lankan batsman Tillakaratne Dilshan played his last International match yesterday against Australia in the second T20 of the series at the Premadasa Stadium in Colombo. He was caught at first slip to John Hastings’ delivery, thus ending his 17-year illustrious career. However, he hailed Dhananjaya de Silva as his possible successor following his 62-run innings in the match.
After struggling with the bat initially, the Asians managed to put only 128 runs in 20 overs which was chased down quite easily by the Australians with flawless 66-run innings from Glenn Maxwell to win the series 2-0. The Aussies also had a successful ODI campaign have clinched 5-match series 4-1 after a 0-3 whitewash in the Tests.
Dilshan has been a powerhouse for Sri Lanka at the top of the order, along with his batting style and aggressive approach to the game. The veteran heaped praise on the all-rounder and said he has the potential to be a successful cricketer in the future days. As reported by ESPN Cricinfo, Dilshan said, "I think Dhananjaya will be a good example to others."
The Sri Lankan further added, "He can bowl and he fields well. With the style that he batted with today and the way he opened in the one-dayers, you can tell he's a player with a future.
“He opened with me for the Tamil Union team last year. I saw his talent about a year ago, and I told the coaches to look out for him. He and Kusal Mendis are two good young players for us. We can go a long way with them if they're shown the right path. I think they'll serve us well for years," he added.
Though he is 39, it is rumoured that pressure from the Sri Lankan Cricket board may have led to his decision to quit International Cricket. The all-rounder also expressed that he was not supported by other teammates during his tenure as a captain, but feels the future of Sri Lankan Cricket is positive.
Regarding this issue, Dilshan said, "Angelo has a lot of young players in the team, and I think it will be easy for him to control it in future. Only Chandimal is there as an experienced player. I don't think he will face too many obstacles.”
Dilshan added, “He will just have to develop the young players and move forward. I wish him well in that. If he can pick the right players for the job, based on their talent - that's what any captain should do. He won't have many problems then."