Nuwan Kulasekara, the Sri Lankan speedster, has announced his Test retirement with immediate effect, a Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) media release stated on Wednesday (June 1).
“I would like to retire from playing Test cricket with immediate effect,” a Sri Lanka Cricket release said, quoting Kulasekara. “After much thought I believe it is the right time to retire and I hope it will allow me to better prepare for ODI and T20 cricket, which I would like to continue playing for Sri Lanka subject to good performance and selection.”
The 33-year-old Kulasekara partook in 21 Tests and picked up 48 wickets since his debut in April 2005. He played his last Test in June 2014 at Lord’s. His best bowling performance came against Pakistan, when he accounted for four wickets, conceding 21 runs, in the first innings of the P Sara Oval Test in July 2009. He bagged four more scalps in the second innings to achieve a match-haul of 8 for 58 – his best show in a Test.
Known to be a predominantly new-ball bowler, Kulasekara was not penetrative enough on a consistent basis once the ball lost its shine due to lack of pace. This forced the selectors to look elsewhere and was not preferred to others, who could bowl faster than him.
Kulasekara had a decent enough technique to make valuable contributions with the bat as well. At Lord’s in 2006, after making a handy 29 in the first innings, he scored a crucial 64 – his highest score in Tests – which helped Sri Lanka avoid a loss against England.
In the ODI format, he transcended to one of Sri Lanka’s strike bowlers in 2008 and attained the top spot in the ODI rankings in March 2009 following 48 wickets in a 11-month period. He has 186 wickets in 173 ODIs at an average of 34.08.