|Full Name||Balapuwaduge Kusal Gimhan Mendis|
|Date of Birth||February 2, 1995|
|Birth Place||Moratuwa, Sri Lanka|
|Height||5 ft 7 in (1.71 m)|
|Role||Batsman/Right-handed, Wicket-keeper, Right-arm leg spin Bowler|
|Batting Style||Right hand Bat|
|Debut||October 15, 2015|
|Family||Dinesh Mendis (Father)|
Kusal Mendis Biography
Kusal Mendis is a Sri Lankan cricketer, who was born on 2 February 1995 in Moratuwa. He is a wicket-keeper batsman who plays in all forms of the game.
He is one of those cricketers who has showed a lot of promise at a very young age after the void left by the retirements of Mahela Jayawardene and Kumar Sangakkara.
His phenomenal hundred in the test against Australia in 2016 is a clear example of his ability to take the Sri Lankan cricket forward.
Kusal Mendis Background
He was the Schoolboy of the Year in 2013 while playing for Prince of Wales College. He was named the captain for Sri Lanka Under-19 in the 2014 ICC U-19 World Cup. He made his Test debut for Sri Lanka at just 20 years of age. What’s more impressive is that he had only played 16 first-class innings before he got into international cricket.
Kusal Mendis Debut
After an experience of just 16 first-class matches, Kusal was given the opportunity to make his international debut. He played his first test against West Indies on 22 October 2015. He scored 13 runs in the first innings and 39 runs in the second innings.
He followed it with his first fifty in tests in the second innings of the first test against England at Leeds.
His ODI debut came against Ireland in Dublin on 16th June 2016. Kusal made a well-paced 51 runs in that game.
Kusal made his first T20I appearance against England on 5th July 2016 in Southampton. He scored 21 off 16 deliveries in that game
Kusal Mendis Rise to Glory
Mendis made his mark in the international arena with a scintillating hundred in the first test against Australia in 2016. His innings helped Sri Lanka secure only their second test win against Australia.
With that wonderful inning, Mendis became the youngest player to hit a century against the Aussies. He also broke the record of scoring the highest score against Australia on home soil. Courtesy of his hundred, Sri Lanka won the match by 106 runs and this was only their second-ever Test match victory against Australia. Mendis was adjudged the Player of the match.
In the fifth encounter of the tri-series between Sri Lanka, Zimbabwe, and the West Indies, Mendis scored 94 runs against the West Indies. Sri Lanka posted a total of 330 runs in 50 overs which was their highest total against the Windies in ODI’s. He was announced as the player of the match. He scored a half-century in the final against Zimbabwe and took his team to a series victory.
Mendis was named “Player of the series” in the tri-series in 2016 where Zimbabwe and West Indies were the other two teams.
In the first test of the home test series against Bangladesh in 2017, he scored a magnificent 194 to guide his team to victory. He continued his good form in the ODI series, where he scored his first ODI hundred at Dambulla.
In the 2017 ICC Champions Trophy, he scored 89 runs against India and made sure Sri Lanka got home. With his knock, Sri Lanka chased down 321 runs and broke the record for the highest successful chase in the ICC Champions Trophy’s history. This was also the team’s joint-highest run chase in ODI cricket. In June 2017, he reached 1000 ODI runs and became the joint-second fastest Sri Lankan player alongside Upul Tharanga to achieve this mark.
Mendis scored 196 runs in the 2018 Test against Bangladesh and became the second Sri Lankan to be dismissed in the 190s in Test match cricket, joining Sangakkara as the other batsman.
Mendis made his T20I debut against Ireland in 2016 and scored a fifty. He went through a tough time in the 2018 Asia Cup when he got out for nothing against Afghanistan and Bangladesh. He was excluded from the tour to England but was called in as a replacement for Kusal Perera in the ODI series. But his bad phase continued and got out without troubling the score-keepers.
The next match did him nothing good either as he was dismissed for 5 runs. He brought up a fifty after 24 innings in the final game of the series. However, England had already won the series despite Sri Lanka’s 219 runs win in the final game due to the D/L method.
In the late 2018 Test against New Zealand, Kusal scored his sixth Test ton and survived the whole fourth day alongside Mathews. This was the fifth time that the pair had achieved this feat in Test matches for Sri Lanka.
The two put on a partnership of 246 runs which was Sri Lanka’s highest-ever partnership for any wicket against the Kiwis. This was also their highest in the second innings of a Test and was the first time for a Sri Lankan pair to put up 200 + runs in the second innings of a Test match outside Asia.
In the next Test, Mendis reached the mark of 1000 Test runs in the 2018 calendar year. He joined Virat Kohli in achieving this milestone. He ended the year as the 2nd highest run-getter in Test with 1,023 runs with an average of above 46 alongside three tons and four fifties.
In the tour to South Africa, Mendis once again struggled in the first Test. He got out for just 16 in the first innings of the second Test but came back strong in the second innings and made his 9th Test hundred. Sri Laka won the series 2-0 and beat the Proteas for the first time in their own backyard.
He was named in Sri Lanka’s squad for the 2019 ICC World Cup where he had a good run with the bat, scoring 273 runs in 7 innings with the help of three fifties. In February 2020, Mendis’ second ODI ton against the Windies helped Sri Lanka win by a massive margin of 161 runs, their biggest win in terms of runs against the West Indies in ODIs.
In June 2021, Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) suspended Mendis along with Danushka Gunathilaka and Niroshan Dickwella when they breached the SL team’s bio bubble during Sri Lanka’s tour to England. Mendis was then suspended from playing international cricket for a whole year. But SLC lifted his ban in January 2022, ending his suspension from playing for Sri Lanka.
Next month, Mendis brought up his sixth half-century in T20Is against Australia. His score of 69 helped Sri Lanka win the match and Mendis was awarded the “Player of the match”. On 23 May 2022, he was admitted to the hospital during the first day of the second Test against Bangladesh after he left the field holding his chest.
In the 2022 Asia Cup, Mendis opened the innings with Pathum Nissanka and they gave a solid start against teams like Bangladesh, Afghanistan, and India. He scored half-centuries against Bangladesh, and India in helping Sri Lanka win the game.
Kusal Mendis Records
With his first test hundred, Mendis became the youngest Sri Lankan to score a test hundred against Australia.
Kusal has 4 consecutive ducks in Tests, fourth-most by a batsman
Kusal has 6th most consecutive ducks in ODIs (3)
Kusal has the 10th-highest strike rate in an ODI inning (311.11)
Kusal Mendis Family
Kusal married his wife on 12 February 2021 in Colombo. Mendis and his wife welcomed a baby girl in June 2022.