Sri Lankan fast bowler Sylvester Dias dies aged 76
Sylvester Dias, a fast bowler who played first class cricket in Sri Lanka in the 1960s, has died aged 76 following a brief illness.
Dias had to compete for a place in the Sri Lanka (then Ceylon) team alongside bowlers of the calibre of Darrell Lieversz, Norton Fredrick and Ian Pieris. Although branded a matting pitch bowler and finishing with just five first-class games to his name, Dias made a fine impression on first-class debut for Sri Lanka Board President's XI against Imtiaz Ahmed's Pakistan team in 1964 at the P Sara Oval. Dias, Fredrick and Pieris formed a formidable fast-bowling combination to rout the strong Pakistan batting line up for totals of 157 and 112. Following his success against Pakistan, Dias was selected to tour India with the Ceylon side led by Michael Tissera in 1964-65, but couldn't break into the XI.