Danushka Gunathilaka, who is currently on an international ban from the June of last year, has announced his retirement from the Test format. The opening batter last played a Test for the nation in 2018 and his continuous failures kept him out of the place in the longer format. Having recently heard a shocking retirement of another Sri Lankan cricketer Bhanuka Rajapaksa, Gunathilaka’s retirement comes as another blow for the Island nation.
Gunathilaka, along with two members of the Sri Lanka squad, namely Kusal Mendis and Niroshan Dickwella, had breached the bio bubble duirng the tour of England in June 2021. The elegant left-hander has played just eight Tests so far, scoring 299 runs at an average of 18.7 and had hit just two fifties in his Test career. His numbers in the limited-overs format are far better and he will continue playing other formats once he completes the ban in five months’ time.
Gunathilaka eyeing a better future in limited-overs cricket
The 30-year-old had revealed the reason behind the sudden decision to be the demanding fitness levels of Sri Lankan cricket at present. The board had recently made plenty of changes in the benchmark for the 2km test from 8 minutes 53 seconds to 8 minutes 10 second. This had, in fact, played a major part in Rajapaksa’s recent retirement decision from international cricket as well.
“It has always been an honour to play for my country and I hope to contribute to the best of my ability in the future by continuing to represent Sri Lanka whenever I am called upon to do so,” Gunathilaka told according to a report from Newswire.
Gunathilaka was a regular in the limited-overs setup for Sri Lanka until he faced a ban and has represented the nation in 44 ODIs and 30 T20 internationals. He can also roll his arm over as a part-time spinner and is one of the excellent fielders going around in the game at the moment. It will be interesting to see if the Sri Lankan Board makes changes to their fitness benchmarks as the number of retirements has started to move up.