Sri Lankan cricket board backs sacking of Australian coach

January 28th, 2012 - 7:01 pm ICT by IANS  

Colombo, Jan 28 (IANS) Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) board president Upali Dharmadasa Saturday backed the board’s decision to sack Geoff Marsh as coach of the national team.

Dharmadasa said that some changes were required to take Sri Lanka cricket forward.

The Sri Lankan cricket team and management underwent a major overhaul this week after the team lost consecutive Test and One-Day International matches in South Africa and against Pakistan in the United Arab Emirates.

Among the changes was the removal of Australian coach Marsh which drew criticism as he had been on the job only for a few months.

“We realize it is no easy task to take over and produce results overnight. Sri Lanka cricket has to move on. We need to reach Cricketing Excellence, sooner rather than later,” Dharmadasa was quoted as saying by Xinhua.

He said that former South African cricketer Graham Ford was later selected as the replacement based on the fact that he can cope with the demand that a 21st century coach has to cope with in the international arena.

“He has had an excellent track record not only as a coach but also in management. Very similar to Australia’s most successful coach of the 21st Century John Buchanan, Graham too has had limited exposure in the International arena as a player. However, the track record of both these gentlemen in their coaching capabilities is far beyond compare,” he said.

Apart from the coach, Sri Lanka also appointed a new captain, selection committee and team manager, as the Sri Lankans prepared to head to Australia for a tri-series also involving India.

“Many seem to criticize Sri Lanka cricket for the changes we implemented by appointing a new captain, coach, team manager and the selection committee. We would like to assure the cricket loving public in Sri Lanka and to our numerous fans that support Sri Lanka cricket globally that we will reap the benefits of these changes in the fullness of time,” Dharmadasa said.

He added that experienced batsman Mahela Jayewardene was appointed as the new captain considering his capabilities, skill level and authoritative and modest personality as a leader to guide the younger players in the team and take the entire side to greater heights.

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