Selectors pick squad for first Test after contracts were signed

The national cricket selectors announced the squad for the first Test against Bangladesh starting in Galle this week after the players signed the contracts today.

At a Selection Committee meeting held at Sri Lanka Cricket this afternoon after the players signed the contracts, a 16 member squad was selected for the first Test.

Former captain Mahela Jayewardene is not in the squad owing to injury and is expected to be out of action for some 4 weeks.

The squad selected for the first Test are: 

Angelo Mathews (Capt)

Dinesh Chandimal (V.Capt & W/C)

T.M Dilshan

Dimuth Karunaratne

Kumar Sangakkara

Lahiru Thirimanna

Shaminda Eranga

Kusal Janith

Jeewan Mendis

Kithruwan Vithanage

Ajantha Mendis

Nuwan Kulasekara

Chanaka Welagedara

Suranga Lakmal

Rangana Herath

P.H.T Kaushal

Meanwhile the cricket board said that all the Cricketers who were offered contracts (with the exception of Mahela Jayawardena who is currently overseas) signed the agreements today.

The original contracts were handed over to the players by officials of Sri Lanka Cricket last week explaining the changes in the new agreement to each category of players.

Upon a request by the players a meeting was organized with the presence of the office bearers of the executive committee of Sri Lanka Cricket to further explain the rationale of components of the contract presented for signing.

At the said meeting, which was held late on the 2nd of March, Sri Lanka Cricket very clearly stated their intention was not to deviate from the context of the original contract.

The Newly appointed National Captain Angelo Mathews, on behalf of the national team players requested a meeting on the following day with the Chairman of Selectors Sanath Jayasuriya.

Upon a request from Jayasuriya the cricket board agreed to grant approval for the meeting and it was held at the cricket board premises with the patronage of the team nanager Michael De Zoysa.

At this meeting the players requested for the reinstatement of the guarantee fee component which was taken off by the board this year.

The guarantee fee is a payment made by the ICC to member nations for participation in the ICC events. Earlier players were allocated of 25% of the fee paid to SLC. The players requested the fee to be paid to them where they would reallocate the funds received via the guarantee fee towards Cricket development activities in the country.

However, the cricket board rejected the proposal put forward by the players as it was felt Cricket Development activities purview should be vested with the governing body rather than with the players in concern.

The amounts allocated to the 23 National Players from the current contracts amounts to 67% of the 2013 revenue generated by Sri Lanka Cricket.

The cricket board says if it agreed to grant the players request to include the guarantee fee component to the contract value, the board will have to bear 81% of its annual revenue towards the 23 cricketers, leaving no provision for a successful all round year.

The cricket board says its stance towards this matter was maintained taking in to account all cricketing interests pertaining to Sri Lanka.

Sri Lanka Cricket said it is pleased to announce that the signing of the Annual Contracts offered to the National Team has now been finalized. The contracts were given to 23 National Players who were categorized in to 4 groups.

Category 1

1. Angelo Mathews

2. T.M.Dilshan

3. Mahela Jayawardana

4. Kumar Sangakkara

5. Lasith Malinga

6. Nuwan Kulasekera

7. Rangana Herath

Category 2

1. Dinesh Chandimal

2. Ajantha Mendis

Category 3

1. Lahiru Thirimanne

2. Thisara Perera

Category 4

1. Shaminda Eranga

2. Chanaka Welagedera

3. Dimuth Karunarathne

4. Jeewan Mendis

5. Suraj Randiv

6. Kusal Janith Perera

7.Sachitra Senanayaka

8.Upul Tharanga

9. Suranga Lakmal

10.Nuwan Pradeep

Special Category

1. Prasanna Jayawardana

2. Thilan Samaraweera

(Colombo Gazette)