Tillakaratne Dilshan quits as Sri Lanka captain

Tillakaratne Dilshan took over from Kumar Sangakkara after the 2011 World Cup final against India AFP

Colombo: Jan 23, 2012

Dashing batsman Tillakaratne Dilshan today stepped down as Sri Lanka captain following his side’s dismal performance in South Africa where they lost both the Test and ODI series.

Veteran batsman Mahela Jayawardene is likely to replace him as captain but Sri Lanka Cricket is yet to make any formal announcement.

The 35-year-old Dilshan has sent in his resignation from South Africa, where Sri Lanka concluded their tour yesterday.

Sri Lanka lost the three-match Test series 1-2 and five-match ODI series 2-3.

Dilshan’s resignation did not come as a surprise as under him Sri Lanka lost away series to England, Pakistan and South Africa while also failing to win against Australia at home. He took over captaincy from Kumar Sangakkara after Sri Lanka’s six-wicket defeat against India in the World Cup final in April last year.

Dilshan’s own form with the bat dipped during his captaincy and despite a historic Test win in Durban, Sri Lanka’s first on South African soil, the loss in the Test and ODI series had him under pressure.

The continued failure by Sri Lanka prompted the Sports Minister Mahindananda Aluthgamage to sack the national selection committee last week and replaced it with a new team.

Coach Geoff Marsh, the former Australian opening batsman, was also asked to quit and he was replaced by Graham Ford, who coached South Africa between 1999 and 2002.(PTI)