Monday, February 16, 2009

One-day cricket`s oldest centurion | Sanath Jayasuriya

Limited overs cricket a young man’s game?

Don’t try telling that to Sanath Jayasuriya. His hundred in the last month’s game at Dambulla against India made him the oldest centurion in ODIs. At 39 years and 212 days he broke the record of Geoff Boycott who was 39 years and 51 days when he scored a hundred against Australia in Sydney in 1979.

Sanath Jayasuriya : The way he is going a century past the age of 40 cannot be ruled out for the ever youthful Sri Lankan who seems to have sipped from the fountain of youth.

After almost 20 years in international cricket he has not lost his zest for the game. He still enjoys batting and conveying that enjoyment to the spectators and his 107 at Dambulla in January 2009 was very much in keeping with that reputation.

Put in to bat Sri Lanka got off to the worst possible start with Tillekeratne Dilshan being run out. But quickly putting that disaster behind him Jayasuriya counter attacked as only he can and with a second wicket partnership of 118 with Kumar Sangakkara got the innings back on track.

This was followed by another fruitful association with Thilina Kandamby. By the time Jayasuriya was fourth out at 171 in the 40th over Sri Lanka were heading for a challenging total thanks to the seasoned swashbuckler’s breezy knock which came off just 114 balls with ten fours and a six.

Sri Lanka were however restricted to 246 for nine in 50 overs and India were home with six wickets and eleven deliveries to spare. But Jayasuriya had given enough notice that neither time nor age had withered his skills.

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