COLOMBO, Sri Lanka, Mar 31 (Reuters) Sri Lanka's Sanath Jayasuriya has announced he will retire from test cricket after the test against Pakistan.
The 36-year-old left-hander, Sri Lanka's highest run scorer in both forms of the game, handed over a letter to the national selectors today confirming his decision.
''I thought about long and hard and decided this was the best time to go,'' Jayasuriya told Reuters.Jayasuriya will continue to play one-day internationals until the 2007 World Cup next March before completely retiring from international cricket.
Jayasuriya was recently dropped for the first time in a decade for Sri Lanka's test series against India last November but reclaimed his place for the Pakistan series.
Stand in captain Mahela Jayawardene paid tribute to Jayasuriya.
''Sanath's contribution to cricket in Sri Lanka has been immense,'' Jayawardene told Reuters.
''His brilliant statistics tell only half the story - he has been a match-winner on so many occasions with both bat and ball.
''We are all hoping that he will finish with a big one next week.'' Jayasuriya has played 101 tests and scored 6599 runs at 41.76 since making his debut back in 1991.
Reuters DH DB2027