Veteran Sri Lanka bowler Lasith Malinga has requested batter Bhanuka Rajapaksa to reconsider his decision to retire from international cricket, citing that he has a lot more to give to the country. The 30-year-old shocked everyone by announcing his retirement from the international level, by writing a letter to the Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) board, on Wednesday, January 5, 2022.
Rajapaksa cited family obligations in the retirement letter that he handed over to the Sri Lankan board.
“I have very carefully considered my position as a player, husband and am taking this decision looking forward to fatherhood and associated familial obligations,” SLC cited Rajapaksa’s resignation letter as stating.
Meanwhile, reports from New Wire had suggested that the reason for Rajapaksa’s retirement was he can’t play cricket with the latest fitness standards introduced by the cricket board especially the skinfold levels. The 30-year-old batsman feels if he brings down his skinfold levels he will not be able to do his power-hitting. Notably, the cricket administration has lowered the skin-fold test levels to 70 from 85.
Rajapaksa played 18 T20Is for Sri Lanka making 320 runs at an average of 26.66, including two fifties, the second of which was a memorable match-winning effort in a 2021 T20 World Cup chase against Bangladesh. In 5 ODIs, Rajapaksa made 89 runs at 17.80.
He also last month led the Galle Gladiators to the final of the Lanka Premier League.
Representing Your Country At International Level Is Not An Easy Task: Lasith Malinga Requests Bhanuka Rajapaksa To Reconsider His Retirement
Amidst the speculations, Sri Lanka legend Lasith Malinga made a special request to Rajapaksa and urged him to reconsider his decision. The former cricketer in a tweet said he believes that the batter “has a lot more to give to Sri Lankan cricket”.
“Representing your country at International level is not an easy task and players always face so many challenges. I truly believe that @BhanukaRajapak3 has a lot more to give to Sri Lankan cricket and I request him to reconsider his decision to retire from International cricket,” the great fast bowler tweeted.
Representing your country at International level is not an easy task and players always face so many challenges.
I truly believe that @BhanukaRajapak3 has a lot more to give to Sri Lankan cricket and I request him to reconsider his decision to retire from International cricket🤞
— Lasith Malinga (@ninety9sl) January 5, 2022
Rajapaksa had been previously in conflict with the cricket board and head coach Micky Arthur about fitness demands.