Famous cricket player of Sri Lanka: Arjuna Ranatunga
A master craftsman and a cricketer with an extremely sharp acumen, Arjuna Ranatunga is one of the key reasons that the game of cricket in Sri Lanka has been exalted to the level where we currently see it.
Born in 1963, Arjuna debuted against English cricket team in 1981 and till his retirement in 1999, he played in a total of 269 ODIs where he scored a total of 7456 runs at a very good average of 35.84 . Arjuna has 4 centuries and 49 fifties to his name with 131* being his highest contribution with the bat in a single inning. After taking over the reigns of the Sri Lankan cricket team in 1988, he pretty much single handedly transformed the way cricket was played in the country and strengthened the squad mentally to become world beaters. His hard work paid off and Sri Lanka won it’s first ever cricket world cup in 1996.
Though his performances with the bat during the 5 world cups he was a part off were nothing to write home about, Arjuna was a cool headed customer who knew the strengths and weaknesses of his team and handled his men like a true leader. Known as ‘Captain Cool’ by many Arjuna is now a full time politician and is trying to use his leadership skills on the pitch to emulate them off the pitch and serve his nation.
With the 2011 cricket world cup around the corner, Sri Lanka’s are being regarded as one of the favorite’s to lift the trophy but in all truthfulness it had not been possible had Arjuna Ranatunga not transform the cricketing ideology that governed the cricketing affairs in Sri Lanka and brought them from being under dogs to the giants of the game. Arjuna is one of the most important captains from Sri lanka. So far he is the only ODI world cup winning captain from Sri lanka.