Pakistan in Sri Lanka 2009 July 19, 2009

Chaminda Vaas to retire from Tests

Cricinfo staff
60

Chaminda Vaas, the Sri Lanka fast bowler, has announced he will retire from Tests after the third match against Pakistan in Colombo starting Monday. He said he will continue to play one-dayers and Twenty20s till the 2011 World Cup.

"I am officially retiring from Test cricket after the third Test against Pakistan, but will continue playing one-day and Twenty20 matches till the 2011 World Cup," he told reporters in Colombo, but declined to take any questions.

It will end a fine career by one of Sri Lanka's most persevering and successful fast bowlers. In 110 Tests he has taken 354 wickets at 29.40 after making his debut against Pakistan in 1994 - the second-highest Sri Lankan wicket-taker - along with 400 one-day wickets. Vaas also has 3085 Test runs at 24.48, including a century.

His captain Kumar Sangakkara led the tributes, saying that Vaas' achievements were the benchmark quick bowlers in his country will strive for. "Vaas is a true champion and probably the only Sri Lankan fast bowler who can be called a true legend of the game," he said. "No matter who replaces Vaasy in the bowling attack they will take years and years to reach the standards he has set - and maybe they never will."

Vaas last represented Sri Lanka in February in the abruptly terminated Test series in Pakistan. On July 4 this year Ashantha de Mel, Sri Lanka's chief selector, had been quoted in the press saying that Vaas had retired from Test cricket. However, Vaas, speaking to Cricinfo, denied any such claims.

Vaas, 35, was axed from the Sri Lanka Twenty20 side last October, missing the four-nation tournament in Canada. He kept his place in the Test side and featured in the Karachi match earlier this year but was subsequently dropped for the aborted Lahore Test after he went wicketless in 31 overs.

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  • Nihal on July 22, 2009, 22:17 GMT

    It is sad when ex-players of dubious ability and integrity are given the responsibility to make decisions about the future of such great players of true international quality and ability such as Vaasy. But that is Srilankan Cricket and will continue in this manner as long as Politicians with no love or knowledge of the game sorround themselves with henchmen who pander to their unashamed sycophancy.

  • Ted on July 22, 2009, 18:43 GMT

    I agree with Sampath. There were few other players like Upul Chandana who were treated very badly and never given a continuous chance even to establish despite the all-round abilities while players like Mubarak are getting ample chances. I think Chief sector de Mel has some attitude problem (or a jealousy) especially with the fast bowlers who has done much better than him and gained world recognition during their long or short careers. Vaas and Lasith Malinga are two visible victims. Just after creating a World Cup record in the last WC Mainga was sidelined strangely quoting injury problems while allowing to bowl full speed at the nets. He was deprived of the definite chance of becoming the highest wicket taker in that WC. To date, Malinga seems to be sidelined for no apparent reason without getting a single Test since 1997 despite taking 91 wkts in just 28 Tests. If he had represented another country, he would have taken many more wickets by now! SL sectors need to be changed urgently

  • mir on July 22, 2009, 11:09 GMT

    one of the bst swing fast bowler..grt name in world cricket..hav ability to swing ball in both wayz...SL will miss him lot due his bowling abilities.......wel done VASSY fr entertaining us.......

  • Sampath on July 21, 2009, 5:11 GMT

    It's very sad to see very unpleasant ways that we have bid farewell to our Cricket Legends. It started from Mahanama where he was told by one senior player before the India Test match, that it was is the his last appearance for the country. Then Great Aravinda was kept out of the team for nearly 2 years ruined his entire career & ultimately he understood the hidden agendas % retired. Hashan was doing good & resigned from Captaincy to concentrate on batting & but he was never called for the team. Marvan the most technically fluent batman SriLanka has ever produced with Roy Dias was ill treated & was forced to retire. Now it is Vaas. If you watched him bowling yesterday it was not Vaasi. Although his legs were moving towards the batsman,his heart & soul was no where. Sad to see the way, treating a true Cricketing Hero, the Best fast Bowler the country, who brought us first ever test victory out side SriLanka. We believe you are suitable for any format of the game. All the Best Vassi.

  • Sanjai on July 21, 2009, 5:05 GMT

    Being a follower of cricket from very early dayz, I alwayz admired vass for his elegance. Alwayz thinking we(India) dont have left arm fast bowler like vass until the arrival of Zaheer khan. I still very well remember he was the only threat Indian batters during late 90s. His performance against Zimbabwe is the trademark of his quality bowling. Few of his variations were impeccable. Many a times he proved handy with bat as well. I rate him as second best left hand seamer after Wasim Akram . Hands down to true legend and witty performer.

  • Sajith on July 20, 2009, 12:53 GMT

    Vassy you are a true legend who made Sri Lanka proud! I still remember how he destroyed the kiwi batting line up in the 1995 test series in New Zealand. In that series he bowled with pace, swing and amazing accuracy and had Ken Rutherford and his men look like novices against fast bowling. His brilliant bowling in that series not only gave Sri Lanka it's fist test win over seas but also announced Vass as a world class bowler to the rest of the world. If I remember right he had a serious ankle injury and had to under go surgery in 1998 and lost lot of pace after that. How ever his accuracy, swing and craftiness never faded away and he even developed the ability to bowl reverse swing. All in all it was a magnificent career and he has earned respect all over the world not only as a great cricketer but also as a wonderful human being. Although the selectors and the cricket board have been ungrateful to him we as cricket fans will honour and respect him for ever! Vassy we salute you!

  • kent on July 20, 2009, 11:22 GMT

    As a West Indian I have followed the career of Chaminda. He is with a doubt the finest fast bowler produced by Sri Lanka and certainly his skill and intelligence as a bowler combined with his lower order batting has made him a recognisable and worthy figure in world cricket for many years. He brings unwariness to his foes with the ball and the fielding side do not want him hanging around too long with the bat. Chaminda, I want to thank you for your tremendous contribution to world cricket and wish you all the best in the coming years. I still look forward to seeing your all round abilities in the ODI's, 20/20 andin the 2011 worls cup!

  • Ashish on July 20, 2009, 10:21 GMT

    No word other than to describe him as a famous legcutter and late swing bowler.He was fine aspect of the SL cricket.He was not only fine bowler but handy lower order batsman.Vaasy was probably the fine tuner of his arts and talent.We all will miss you in TEST cricket.I know you still have good time ahead for ODI and T20 cricket.

  • sam on July 20, 2009, 10:21 GMT

    Chaminda Vass, what a great cricketer as well as a gentleman that Sri Lanka is going to miss. Hey, Sri Lankan cricket selection team shame on you. You should have given at least the due respect to a true gentleman in the gentlemen's game that you owe him. Anyway, thank you Vaasy for being a corner stone in Sri Lankan cricket for the last 15 years and being a down to earth and humble person. We are proud of you. All the best for your future.

  • Mohan on July 20, 2009, 8:11 GMT

    Chaminda Vaas is a smooth bowler who's unquestionably the best ever Sri Lankan pace / fast-medium bowler. And like all Sri Lankan players, he's a humble, likeable guy and a good competitor.

    All the best Chaminda.

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