World T20: SLC disappointed with Mahela Jayawardene for accepting England job

Colombo, Feb 27: Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) has expressed disappointment at former captain Mahela Jayawardene taking up the role of consultant with the England team for the upcoming ICC World Twenty20.

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SLC president Thilanga Sumathipala termed Jayawardene's decision "sad and disappointing", even though it will be for just 10 days. Interestingly, both Sri Lanka and England are clubbed in the same group.

A file picture of Mahela Jayawardene

"I had a lot of respect and gratitude for Mahela's knowledge, but now he's advisor to a competing team of ours. I'm very disappointed that a national captain, within a few months of retirement, has been retained by another team at a World Cup," Sumathipala was quoted as saying by 'ESPNcricinfo'.

He added, "You could go to a club, a province, an IPL kind of team, or a county. But this is a World Cup. You can't have a player who has just left your country's team joining a competitive nation. All the contracted players who are playing, once they retire from the game, should have at least 24 months before joining another team for giving advice or coaching."

Jayawardene had previously worked with England for two Tests, during their tour to the UAE in 2015. Jayawardene played his last ODI for Sri Lanka in March last year, but had quit T20s in April 2014.

Sumathipala mentioned the need for a minimum cooling-off period in such cases. "You need that minimum cooling-off period, because you were recently in the team," Sumathipala said.

"You know the team's strengths and its weaknesses because you're inside the team. You know your team planning ahead of the World Cup. I think I've been very sad and disappointed by this."


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