Angelo Mathews’ name is not in the group of 18 players announced by Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) who have signed the men’s National Player Contracts for a period of 5 months – in effect from August 1 and till the end of December 31, 2021.
The board stated that these contracts are “without any deviation” from the ones offered to the players previously, the ones which the players refused to sign over lack of transparency. The players said they had issues with the “rating system devised by SLC’ when they denied signing them.
The boards announced a five-point grading system for its contracted cricketers. This judged players on their Performance, Fitness, Leadership, Professionalism, and Future Potential and Adaptability.
Now, the cricketers have accepted the merit system, as said by the released statement: “The criteria and the allocation of points to individual players were shared among the players before they signed the contracts.”
The trio of Danushka Gunathilaka, Niroshan Dickwella and Kusal Mendis are currently serving a ban for breaching the bio-bubble on their tour of England.
Players who signed contracts: Dhananjaya De Silva, Kusal Perera, Dimuth Karunaratne, Suranga Lakmal, Dasun Shanaka, Wanindu Hasaranga, Lasith Embuldeniya, Pathum Nissanka, Lahiru Thirimanne, Dushmantha Chameera, Dinesh Chandimal, Lakshan Sandakan, Vishwa Fernando, Oshada Fernando, Ramesh Mendis, Lahiru Kumara, Ashen Bandara, Akila Dananjaya
Angelo Mathews unavailable for selection: SLC
The statement also said that veteran all-rounder Angelo Mathews wasn’t considered in this list because he is “currently unavailable for selection”. The right-hander pulled out of the home matches against India due to “personal reasons”.
He is believed to be unhappy after being dropped from the limited-overs sides earlier this year, although he has since been offered a place in the white-ball squads. ESPNcricinfo reported that Angelo Mathews was considering retirement from international cricket. Earlier this year, all-rounder Thisara Perera retired from international cricket aged 32.
On the field, Sri Lankan cricket continues its spiral down in the international arena. They lost the ODI series to Bangladesh before being annihilated in ODIs and T20Is in England. At home, they lost the ODI series to a second-string Indian side. They won the T20Is series. However, it was only when several Indian players were forced into quarantine they won the last two T20Is after losing the first match.
Sri Lanka is scheduled to host South Africa for three ODIs and three T20Is in September ahead of the T20 World Cup, where they will play in the qualifying tournament to qualify for the Super 12 stage.