Sri Lankan batsman and ex-skipper Tillakaratne Dilshan announced his retirement from Test cricket today, citing the need to step aside and let the younger players come into the team.
It was an emotional moment for Dilshan’s wife, Manjula Thilini, who was present at the press release, as she was seen holding back her tears as Dilshan tried to console her.
Dilshan, aged 37, revealed today in a press conference in Colombo that he had earlier planned to retire after the Zimbabwe series. But the series was later postponed and he took the decision to leave the game without any farewell match.
“It’s a good time to go. I have done well in my last series with an average of 60,” Dilshan said, referring to his last series against Bangladesh.
Dilshan, an attacking top order batsman, led Sri Lanka in 11 Test matches, winning one, drawing 5 and losing 5.
“I started (Tests) in Zimbabwe in 1999 and planned to retire in Zimbabwe. Unfortunately, we don’t have any test matches in Sri Lanka until 2015, and that’s why I decided to retire without saying goodbye from the ground,” he said.
In a career spanning across 14 years, Dilshan played 87 Tests and scored 5492 runs, including 16 centuries at an average of 40.98. He was an aggressive right-handed batsman and played many match-winning knocks for his side.
His career-highest was 193 which he made against England at Lord’s in 2011.
Dilshan will continue to play ODIs and T20Is for Sri Lanka.