Sri Lanka news

Jayawardene to quit T20Is after World T20

ESPNcricinfo staff

March 17, 2014

Comments: 139 | Text size: A | A

Mahela Jayawardene plays an inside-out shot over cover, Sri Lanka v South Africa, 3rd T20, Hambantota, August 6, 2013
Mahela Jayawardene is one of only six batsmen to have scored a century in all three formats © AFP
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Mahela Jayawardene, the former Sri Lanka captain, will retire from Twenty20 internationals at the end of the World T20. The news came a day after his team-mate, Kumar Sangakkara, announced the tournament will be his last in the format as well.

"The rationale behind retirement is pretty much the same as Sanga's," Jayawardene told Wisden India. "When it is clear that I can't see myself playing in the next ICC World T20, there wasn't much point in me occupying a spot. It makes more sense for a youngster to come into the mix and establish himself."

Jayawardene, 36, has played 49 T20Is to date, and is his nation's leading run-scorer in the format, having hit 1335 runs at 31.78, with a strike rate of 134.17. A technical purist for much of his career, Jayawardene introduced new strokes and an innovative outlook to his game to become arguably Sri Lanka's best T20 batsman. He had not played the reverse sweep for the first 10 years of his international career, but the shot is now among his most productive in limited-overs cricket.

"While I enjoy all formats of the game, and Test cricket is certainly the pinnacle for any player, the journey in Twenty20 cricket has been fascinating," Jayawardene said. "In many ways it helped me get back to my roots, to bat like I used to when I was a schoolboy, for the sheer love of playing attacking shots and expressing myself with full freedom."

Jayawardene is also revered among Sri Lanka's finest captains, and his record at the helm of the T20 side lays out his tactical prowess. In 19 matches under Jayawardene, Sri Lanka won 12, lost six and tied one. He had the reins during Sri Lanka's march to the 2012 World T20 final, having hit a crucial 42 on a Premadasa dustbowl in the semi-final, to propel his team there.

That his retirement came 18 years to the day since Sri Lanka won the World Cup, did not escape Jayawardene. Having lost two World T20 finals, he hoped his swansong would capture something of that 1996 spirit. "That was a big day for Sri Lankan cricket and no one at home will ever forget it. Every year we look back on that date with joy," he said. "Hopefully we can do something special here in this tournament as well. We always come into big tournaments such as this one with a view to showing the world what Sri Lanka is capable of. We take great pride in our performances and it's no different here in Bangladesh."

Jayawardene has taken more catches in international cricket than any other fielder, with 14 of those having come in T20s. He has one T20 century against Zimbabwe in Guyana, making him one of six batsmen to have hit a hundred in all three formats.

Jayawardene also shares a second-wicket partnership record with Sangakkara, having made 166 together against West Indies in 2010. Like Sangakkara, Jayawardene is expected to continue playing franchise-based domestic T20. While T20 retirement is the first step toward winding down his international career, he has indicated the 2015 ODI World Cup remains a goal, and that he will play Tests as long as form, fitness and motivation allow.

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by espncricinfomobile on (April 5, 2014, 15:52 GMT)

If they really plan for country..... Y do they make issue on salary????? N quit without intimating to selectors..... Here it shows that they r giving more importance to money than country or passion for the game...

Posted by ruwan777 on (March 21, 2014, 3:45 GMT)

for me we are not missing him. he opens the doors for new comers and backing them up.a after arjuna backed murali n darmasena and so many mahela is the first to recon n preserve new comers .so he will be there with team. T20 is a youngsters game and it is the high need of hat talent. so the right decision at right time..

Posted by navindra80 on (March 19, 2014, 6:52 GMT)

Mahela one of the finest batsmen Sri Lanka has ever made. He filled the position of Aravida did in mid 80s to late 90s. He is good captain and true gentlemen unlike most of the cricketers nowadays. His decision along with Sanga is well judged and good for players like Thirimanne and Priyanjan/Chadimal have more responsibility in top order in T20s coming ups and groom themselves.

Posted by ITJOBSUCKS on (March 19, 2014, 2:50 GMT)

@ Eranga Abeygunawardana..It's Aravinda(mad max) who won the semi-final & final in the 96 WC for Srilanka not jayasuriya as you've mentioned!!! In fact Sanath failed in both the matches!!!

Posted by   on (March 18, 2014, 12:21 GMT)

@Eranga, I don't know what you are trying to say from your comment. Sanath Jayasuriya is a legend, a great cricketer. We all know and accept that. But that does not make Mahela a less valuable player. You don't have be the number one for fans to miss you. Sangakkara and Mahela are good thinkers in the game, have contributed a lot and they deserve to be appreciated. This article about that and there is no need of comparison.

Posted by   on (March 18, 2014, 11:16 GMT)

In ODI, Jayasuriya has taken Sri Lanka into Two world cup finals and Won one for SL and only Sri Lanken to become the most valuable player of a WORLD CUP.Sanath Has won 11 Series Awards while Dilshan 5, Sanga 5 and mahela 4.

Sanath has Won 48 player of the match awards( 2nd in the world ) while Aravinda 30, Sangakkara 26 , Arjuna 24 ,Attapattu 20 and Mahela just 19.

When goes to ODI Centuries, Sanath has scored 28 ( 2nd in the world ) Centuries,Sanga 18,Dilshan 17 and Mahela just 15.

Sanath Jayasuriya is the Second in the world who's been involved in most ODI wins for his country with 233 victories only second to the Ponting. Sanath Jayasuriya has scored the most runs in Asian cup by scoring 1220 runs at the average of 53.04 while Sanga 1075 at the average of 48.86 and Mahela has scored only 674 runs at the average of 29.30. So in Sri Lanka cricket history Sanath's performance is unmatched to anyone.

Posted by ksquared on (March 18, 2014, 11:14 GMT)

What most people don't realize is that SL has never been a team which depends on one or two individual performances to win matches unlike some other teams but a team performance. Hence even though many batsmen from SL don't have ODI avg above 40/50 we still manage to win consistently in big tournaments. Mahela is a prime example he is a great player because he is a big match player and more often than not performs rescue acts when SL need him whomever the opposition

Posted by   on (March 18, 2014, 9:43 GMT)

Aravinda Arjuna took srilanka into 1 WC final and won it. But Mahela and sanga took Sri Lanka into 4 WC Finals, Made a better Test team which was almost no 1 Ranked.(Unfortunately it was gone other way) , get education to youngsters, brought good youngsters into the team like Thiti Chandimal and Akila.. So I think Mahela and sanga have done better than enyone!

Posted by St.John on (March 18, 2014, 7:55 GMT)

Both Mahela and Sangakarra are not powerful hitters of the ball, but they have been invaluable for SL's T20 successes. BTW, those saying 'It does not matter, this is ONLY T20 cricket' I say it does matter. T20 is the future of international cricket. Geoff Boycott said in an interview some months ago that he doesnt see Test Cricket existing in another 15-20 years. ODI's will go the same way... In a fast moving World nobody has the time to sit through 5 Days or one whole day to see these formats. Even as an Olympic sport T20 is the best way to go.

Posted by   on (March 18, 2014, 6:59 GMT)

@Eranga, Though Sanga and Mahela couldnt do upto what Aravinda or Jayasuriya has done to the country, but Sanga and Mahela also have done something, that should be appreciated.

Posted by android_user on (March 18, 2014, 6:39 GMT)

We will miss a great player

Posted by android_user on (March 18, 2014, 6:36 GMT)

Mahela has done great work for his country In all format In the game. Mahela's retirement 'll be a gap for Srilankan cricket, no doubt about that... We hope his last T20 world cup will be remarkable In his carrer...

Posted by   on (March 18, 2014, 6:33 GMT)

come on these 2 srilankans have done something great and this is the time to respect not to compare them and speak about their mistakes. whenever i see srilanka vs india match(i am an indian) i am always relieved or happy to see their back. Respect to these 2 great players always

Posted by ITJOBSUCKS on (March 18, 2014, 5:31 GMT)

BTW, Aravinda(mad max) was a big match player & played probably his best knock in the semi-final WC 96 when srilanka lost 3 wickets for 1 run against Ind & took the game by the scruff of the game!! I would rate that innings better than the final even though he scored a 100 in final(as dew played a major role)!!! This is where sanga & mahela are found wanting even though mahela has scored a 100 against Ind in WC 2011!!! You can never have a player of Aravinda's calibre!!

Posted by   on (March 18, 2014, 5:22 GMT)

Highly overrated batsman than his actual performance.In 2013 Mahela has scored only 111 runs from Five matches at the average of 27.7. But young Kusal Has scored 301 runs from 9 matches at the average of 33.44. Dilshan 219 from 7 matches at the average of 43.8. So no impact to the team though Mahela retire after or even before the world cup. During last IPL2013 Mahela's average was 22 and Sanga could score only 111 runs from 9 matches at the average of 13.33. So their apperance wont do any real impact to the game at all.

Posted by ITJOBSUCKS on (March 18, 2014, 5:11 GMT)

@priceless1 Test matches are the real deal!! A player's technique, temperament, skill are judged by test matches!!! As far as ODI's are concerned, India has won champions trophy in ENGLAND last year, WC T20 in SA, CB series in Australia in 2008, Natwest series in England......Has Srilanka won any tournament(not bi-lateral series) outside subcontinent? There are lot of bi-lateral ODI series which India has won in NZ in 2009, WI(twice), ENG in the last decade!!!

Posted by lancia71 on (March 18, 2014, 5:06 GMT)

@ITJOBSUCKS - I am sri Lankan and agree with your comments to certain degree. But I don't think it's fair to tag Sanga as a flat track bully. I see many of my countrymen comparing Sanga to Lara and Tendulakr but frankly those two are in a different league in my opinion. Certainly Sanga can be bracketed with Dravid, Kallis and Ponting. If not for the very late maturity shown by Aravinda, he would have had a much better record than Sanga and could have been easily classed among the very best.

Posted by priceless1 on (March 18, 2014, 4:29 GMT)

@ITJOBSUCKS why you're comparing Test match records here? just compare SL T20 and ODI records for lest few years in out side Subcontinent against your Team ( real flat track bullies's) records

Posted by ITJOBSUCKS on (March 18, 2014, 4:03 GMT)

If you need definition for "flat track bully", then just look @ Mahela & Sanga to a certain extent!!!! When you check for a player, you tend to look @ his record outside outside subcontinent because that's how you judge his ability....what has he done in an unknown territory??? In fact Mahela's & Sanga's record in outside subcontinent is poorer than VVS & Sehwag which is shocking!! Quite surprisingly, Mahela & Sanga have really struggled against Aus in their own conditions & srilanka has won only 1 test match against AUS in their whole history!!! No team can boast of such a record..;) I reckon Aravinda de silva is the greatest srilankan batsmen ever!!

Posted by ITJOBSUCKS on (March 18, 2014, 3:59 GMT)

If you need definition for "flat track bully", then just look @ Mahela & Sanga to a certain extent!!!! When you check for a player, you tend to look @ his record outside outside subcontinent because that's how you judge his ability....what has he done in an unknown territory??? In fact Mahela's & Sanga's record in outside subcontinent is poorer than VVS & Sehwag which is shocking!! Quite surprisingly, Mahela & Sanga have really struggled against Aus in their own conditions & srilanka has won only 1 test match against AUS in their whole history!!! No team can boast of such a record..;) I reckon Aravinda de silva is the greatest srilankan batsmen ever!!

Posted by ProdigyA on (March 18, 2014, 2:26 GMT)

Though SL fans don't have the heart to praise a player from India, Mahela has been a great ambassador of the game and be will be missed. Respect from India.

Posted by   on (March 18, 2014, 2:16 GMT)

Two of the great cricketers Sri Lanka has produced. More importantly they are absolute gentlemen who have done proud to cricket. Australia should take note of how these men behaved on and off the field.

Posted by android_user on (March 18, 2014, 1:53 GMT)

It's good for jayawardene to retire in t20's .Good career of jayawardene.

Posted by ViratDevilliersFan on (March 18, 2014, 1:44 GMT)

hold on !!! mahela is a mediocre batsman accept it.. look at the guy after playing over 400 matches his avg is just 30 and he is called a legend lol.. even rohit sharma scores at an avearage of 35 after 120 matches.. so after he quits he should have called legend ... what a logic islanders.. cricinfo do publish... cheers

Posted by   on (March 18, 2014, 1:19 GMT)

no words to say how sad for me.... MJ u became my heart in cricket .. after long journey in srilankan cricket now u are going to retire .. thaks for ur contribution fou our country .........goodluck

Posted by android_user on (March 18, 2014, 1:08 GMT)

Such a talented cricketer I have ever seen @Mahela.. Have a Good luck.. :)

Posted by   on (March 17, 2014, 23:54 GMT)

Good show in the first warm up match SL. I know it doesn't mean much in the context of the tournament, but its always good for your confidence. Also SL is maintaining their winnings ways. Dilshan is woefully out of form. I'm afraid if he does't show improvement in the 2nd warm-up, SL shouldn't play him in the tournament. He seems to be still struggling with that hand too. Thirimanna could come in to the team and could open with Kusal or they could promote Mahela to open and probably bring in Priyanjan in the middle oder. His off-spin too will come in handy in these conditions. He has shown that he could be a very accurate and a 'nagging' type of bowler.

Posted by ManojMathew on (March 17, 2014, 21:51 GMT)

Overrated. Cannot perform when needed. What a bust both of them were in the IPL.

Posted by satchander on (March 17, 2014, 21:12 GMT)

Frankly not sure why so many sad notes pouring in from many people here on this forum. This is only T20 format Sanga and Mahela are retiring from - NOT Tests or ODI. T20 is just fun. The real formats are Tests and ODI.

Posted by espncricinfomobile on (March 17, 2014, 21:10 GMT)

C'mon people. Don't get so emotional with your posts. They are only retiring International T20's. They are still gonna play other formats.

Posted by android_user on (March 17, 2014, 20:46 GMT)

mahela & Sanga ....True champions. ..If you are a true cricket lover no doubets that you will miss them regardless your nationality....Well done guys .

Posted by   on (March 17, 2014, 20:35 GMT)

Strange decisions .... if these players are given opportunities in IPL kind of tournaments with big wages ... They will have no problem playing this format ...

Posted by Pakisheikh on (March 17, 2014, 20:32 GMT)

Im a pakistani but I really wish if Pakistan won't win, It should be Srilanka. Jaya and Sanga have given so much to Srilanka and international cricket. They deserve this T20 cup before they bow out of T20s.

Posted by android_user on (March 17, 2014, 20:24 GMT)

what a character he is .good luck mahela Odis &5days

Posted by HawksEyeFocused on (March 17, 2014, 19:57 GMT)

That's a very good news to me. I hate him more than I hate Sangakkara. I hate their whining especially in crunch situations. I'm very happy today to hear Jayawardene and Sagakkara's retirement. Hurrah!!!

Posted by GrindAR on (March 17, 2014, 19:52 GMT)

They both are the pillars of SL team in any format. Versatile players, especially shifting gears up and down according to the situation and playing as real role models of what Cricket stand for.... As I said, they are always two in a box of greater value than their humbleness. After Gordon Greenidge and Desmond Haynes, the most successful two in a box that Cricket had in the post WWII era. The beauty is they fit well in all formats of the game, both batting and in their fielding departments... Wen they retire from other forms, the last remaining jewels of Golden (supreme breed of players who were made out of love for cricketing skills) Era of World Cricket would end.

However the current and next generation of players will be compared against the jewels for one or the other reasons on occasions were the beauty of the game is at display.... Very few will emerge as unique talents who revolutionize the game ( would it happen at all????).

Posted by android_user on (March 17, 2014, 19:44 GMT)

Mahela Jayawardene wat write about u though I am an Indian but the respect I have for u is immense. You sir have played some fantastic cricket in all those years whenever the team needed you delivered, who can forget your century in the world cup 2011. you sir are like a wine u keep getting better with age. looking forward for a great show from u in dis t20

Posted by   on (March 17, 2014, 19:15 GMT)

ViratTheIndianLegend u think Mahela is a slogger. You should listen to some Indian legends. They will tell you how classy he is.

If u never have seen him playing watch him in this t20 tournament. You will feel sorry for the comments you made. Also you will find which team has the real sloggers.

Posted by android_user on (March 17, 2014, 18:17 GMT)

mahela and sanga both r great players I think great decision. .

Posted by s.g.a. on (March 17, 2014, 18:00 GMT)

U are the my favourite cricketer when roshan mahanama is retired. when u entered SL team, very very difficult to get place in the team. But u kept faith with arjuna & with other senior players as well as SL cricket fans. Because u showed the world about from your first match. U born with such a cricket talent. I never leave u in my heart this 17 years of your career, even your hardtime. i always believe u. when u playing under 12 college cricket, i knew oneday u captain SL cricket team, because i have knowledge of your talent.also i know this is the last two years u playing in SL team. SO, U ARE SUCH A GREAT SERVENT IN SRILANKA CRICKET. GOOD LUCK MAHELA. THANK U VERY MUCH FOR YOUR SERVICE TO THE COUNTRY.

Posted by espncricinfomobile on (March 17, 2014, 17:42 GMT)

Even though i dont like the island nation,i love mahela and sanga a lot..such a great ambassadors of cricket,lovely personalities..sad to see both retire..srilankan cricket is blessed to have them along with Arjuna and Aravinda..legends will retire but not their u sanga and mahela

Posted by android_user on (March 17, 2014, 17:23 GMT)

dont know what to say.heart broken twice within two days.after watching sanga and mahela this long it is really difficult to imagine how SL looks like without these two giants.sure talented players will come to replace.but this passion,this gentleness provided by them will never forget.u r the real giants of this era.all the best both of u guys.

Posted by   on (March 17, 2014, 17:17 GMT)

hmmm I think Dilshan missed the chance to announced his own retirement and he would not get another chance as there are abundant you talent to take his spot. Let the youngsters take the mantle to greater heights. Thanks for the services and are highly appreciated.

Posted by   on (March 17, 2014, 17:09 GMT)

Sanga & Mahela both r great players. World T20 Cup "Pakistan, India and the West Indies are top three favorites," said the former Pakistan captain Wasim Akram. But i think Sri Lanka is top favorite. lets see . Kamal from Pakistan

Posted by Htc-Android on (March 17, 2014, 17:05 GMT)

Good decision from both Sanga and Mahela. I hope Dilshan also announces his retirement from T20s. I know we will miss these 3 from our T20 Side. But this allows us to build a team for the next T20 world cup.

Posted by Nuwas on (March 17, 2014, 16:59 GMT)

Sad to see specially MJ retiring from this format of cricket, coz he is more of a T20 player than an ODI player. Anyways its just T20, so no worries, SL young battalion is very promising too. However I've a feeling this time we will lift the Title and the two Greats of our Cricket will have a deserving send off in this format. Good to see the warm-up match was also a thriller, to most of us Today is the opening day of T20 WC 2014.

Posted by nainil0683 on (March 17, 2014, 16:48 GMT)

Loads of respect to you both Sri Lankan giants. Absolute class and rock-solid temperament. Good Luck for the World Cup next year.

Posted by Pravinsubu on (March 17, 2014, 16:17 GMT)

Hope they retire in style winning the WT20 - Sri Lanka deserve it. I really just love watching them both play. Hope India end up as runner's - An Indian Fan

Posted by screamingeagle on (March 17, 2014, 15:59 GMT)

Good Luck to both stalwarts. I would like India to win though. :)

Posted by wapuser on (March 17, 2014, 15:58 GMT)

We need more commentators like ramz30380 and less ppl like ViratTheIndian Legend and Blade runner .Stop slandering gr8 players and teams

Posted by FranciscoQuadros on (March 17, 2014, 15:44 GMT)

Two days. Two legends. Two retirements!! Sangakkara and Jayawardene, the cornerstone of Sri Lankan cricket for the past decade.. With both of them in their mid 30's, this retirement from T20's was on the cards, and how fitting would it be to see these two massive giants of Sri Lankan cricket win a WT20 for one last time. Jayawardene, a classy and elegant right hander and Sangakkara, determined and hungry for runs. They may not have the flair and exuberance of youth, but they have a heart of a Lion..!! Whenever Sri Lankan cricket has been in the doldrums, be it on the field or off the field, these two legends have always stood up!! Salute!! Respect!!

Posted by   on (March 17, 2014, 15:19 GMT)

Sanga & Mahela are true ambassadors of Cricket, They work hard on the field and off the field. Elegant Cover Drive of Sanga and the Late cut Mahela always treat to watch in any format of the game.... A Good decision though to retire from T20I. They will be Simply in 2016 squad if they continue to play. But, give youngsters to find the rhythm to play confidently in the next T20I WC is the main object of the retirement. Hats Off to 2 greats of modern Era- A DIE HARD FAN OF SANGA(CRICKET)

Posted by ramz30380 on (March 17, 2014, 15:16 GMT)

@ViratTheIndianLegend that was totally unnecessary for u to comment this way abt one of the greats of SL cricket. Mahela is never a slogger, he is a proper batsman...

FYI India won 5 series in 2013 including the Champions Trophy and the Tri Series in West Indies beating SL! Stop this mockery!

Posted by binu.emiliya on (March 17, 2014, 15:04 GMT)

So the artist is going! He was the capain of our own Cochin team and my favourit srilankan cricketer! Really an artist he is...Good luck Mahela

Posted by ARad on (March 17, 2014, 15:01 GMT)

It is sad to see a great career slowly coming towards its end. He may not just be Sri Lanka's shrewdest ever captain, most astute speaker (Sanga is overrated in this regard - he is full of 'platitudes'), the best slips fielder and the most stylish batsman, in all these categorie, MJ's name should be mentioned among the modern greats among all nations as well.

He is the one who needs to be in all the world panels representing Sri Lanka - not Sangakkara even though Sangakkara may edge MJ out in the batting front.

Posted by YsaKaru on (March 17, 2014, 14:39 GMT)

You served your country well.hopefully this WC is your and sangas best ever WC....and we need your service for another 2-3 years in other formats.HATS OFF AND WE SALUTE BOTH YOU AND SANGA!!!!!!!! WE ARE GOING TO MISS BOTH OF YOU SO BADLY........SANGA & MAHELA..........

Posted by RanjitW on (March 17, 2014, 14:25 GMT)

Sanga and Mahela has taken a correct decision. T20 is a form of base ball and cannot be considered as 'pure' cricket! There you need sloggers and not technique! Both Sanga and Mahela are correct cricket players and are not T20 sloggers. I am not surprised that they did not take this decision earlier because they need to make a living too as cricket is their livelihood. They too have families to feed. Now that they are well off and ODI and test brings a respectable income it is time to retire from T20. Apart from that they have served far beyond any other in SL cricket for a longer time and with great success. Best of lick to you both and a big "Thank you! " for bringing SL cricket to this status after the departure of the previous SL cricketing greats.

Posted by wapuser on (March 17, 2014, 13:40 GMT)

Its just T20 internationals .SL fans need not worry .How many T20I are played every year. Plus it will give new batsman a chance. Both are legends no doubt but its just T20 so technically they are not retiring .An Indian fan.

Posted by iNsiDers on (March 17, 2014, 13:31 GMT)

Amazing player with great character ... Respect from Pakistan

Posted by Vikum72 on (March 17, 2014, 13:14 GMT)

As a Sri Lankan fan and an old Nalandian, I would like to congratulate Mahela on his illustrious career and more importantly his excellent conduct as a sports hero and a role-model. Sad to see you go but all the best for your future endeavors!

Posted by Senaratne77 on (March 17, 2014, 13:13 GMT)

It seems like yesterday in remembering Mahela the schoolboy of Nalanda from about '93/4 onwards! Everyone who saw him in cricket knew he was destined for greatness. What a player. Truly a fantastic player! Wish you all the best Mahela and all the best to you as well Kumar! Two of the all time greats!

Oh by the way, ViratTheIndianLegend, if you call Mahela a Slogger, you seriously need to find another sport to follow, as you seem to know nothing of Cricket

Posted by whocareswhowins on (March 17, 2014, 13:03 GMT)

Two all-time greats of the world game. Sri Lankan legends. Has been a privilege to have watched Sangakkara and Jayawardene. Wish them both well.

Posted by NonyNiz on (March 17, 2014, 13:01 GMT)

it could be difficult for lanka after retirement of two bravo ....

Posted by kaluwa on (March 17, 2014, 12:31 GMT)

Good lucck mahela and sanga

Posted by ViratDevilliersFan on (March 17, 2014, 12:29 GMT)

so another slogger down...he must be eyeing ipl contracts for sure but thats impossible for so called greats i dnt think so. sunset is coming on srilankan cricket.. god bless yeah

Posted by   on (March 17, 2014, 12:14 GMT)

Thank you Mahela for the great memories you and Kumar leave behind. The legacy both you and your mate leave behind will be remembered to infinity. I have had the pleasure enjoying some of the great nostalgic stroke play I have ever witnessed by you and sanga, the two of you are a world class combination. Critics have written, spoken, and even broadcast when you have had a bad patch, but today you have proved far beyond doubt, that T20 does have room for orthodox players in the caliber of u and Kumar. " Esto Perpetua" , gentlemen " Be thou for Ever" and to u kumar " Respece Finem " Look to the end.

Posted by wapuser on (March 17, 2014, 11:59 GMT)

What about dilshad I think he better retire before the wt20

Posted by android_user on (March 17, 2014, 11:51 GMT)

We are going to miss both Mahela and Kumar in the T20 format. Truly appreciate their willingness to give the opportunity for young talent. Remarkable.

Posted by   on (March 17, 2014, 11:51 GMT)

A great player in al formats of the game..great players choose great situations to do great things.He is doing a right thing.And by saying 'if I know I can't play next T20 WC' tells us about the attitude of man!Himself with Sanga have been a great ambassdors of Srilankan Cricket!Gud luck for the tournament as well as rest of your life Mahela!

Posted by KingOwl on (March 17, 2014, 11:51 GMT)

I said the same yesterday about Sanga. It will be fantastic and just reward if SL could win this cup. Perfect send off for Mahela and Sanga. SL certainly have the talent in abundance, and they are the #1. But, as we all know, T20 is a funny game and is unpredictable in the short term. So, hopefully, a bit of luck will be on SL's side for a change to take that one extra step.

Posted by   on (March 17, 2014, 11:46 GMT)

And there is one more down. The sun is fading away from greats. The year surely is not good for cricket with legends like Kallis, Smith, Sanga and now Jaya hanging up their boots. Its only a matter of time when he will bid adieu to ODIs as well. A year may be. But surely this year is taking away stars from cricket. One of the finest batsman, fielder, captain and no doubt a pure gentleman. From India and all the cricket loving people - We love you Jaya and will miss you.

Posted by   on (March 17, 2014, 11:40 GMT)

i think its a good oppurtunity to our youngsters to prove their credentials, guys like chandimal , thirimanne have very good record in aus, Sa, and even in Eng, its just asia they have to score big ( it seems thirmanne learnt it already), plus we have kusal , dimuth, mathews, thisara, chaturanga, ashan, in batting (ofcourse Bhanuka ,kithruwan also) while we have improving fast bowlers like eranga, lakmal , its just team effort really matters from here onwards, which is not easy but also not impossible either, hope you all remember how we beat south africa in durban via a great team effort

Posted by shiminhaj on (March 17, 2014, 11:39 GMT)

Mahela is my favorite player i am going to miss my role model. please play 1 more year.........

Posted by shiminhaj on (March 17, 2014, 11:33 GMT)

Mahela is my favorite player i am going to miss my role model.

Posted by Pathiyal on (March 17, 2014, 11:30 GMT)

i dont think i will miss Mahela/ Sanga in t20s since i dont enjoy watching t20s much :-) they both are a cricket lover's delight, in terms of the shots they play and the games they win. i hope they will continue a bit longer in the main formats of the game. wish them more power, to carry on. the game will lose a bit more of a legacy without these 2 marvellous people.

Posted by shiminhaj on (March 17, 2014, 11:26 GMT)

we are going to miss mahela................

Posted by espncricinfomobile on (March 17, 2014, 11:25 GMT)

Salute to two great legends

Posted by vinay224 on (March 17, 2014, 11:05 GMT)

Great batsman, captain and an outstanding fielder with most catches to his name in odi's. Sanga and jaya are like dravid and laxman for india. these pairs are greatest in terms of partnerships.

Posted by Naked_Cricket on (March 17, 2014, 11:02 GMT)

I bet you. SLC Contract Issue led this happen earlier than we thought. But good time to retire after a WC. But hope they play Tests for two or three yrs.

Posted by android_user on (March 17, 2014, 11:01 GMT)

he s a wonderful cricketer.we r really miss u.he knew that its a good time for leaving.i love sanga:-(

Posted by   on (March 17, 2014, 10:54 GMT)

You are one of the the Greatest well performed Batsman and a Captain who's impossible to be replaced in years to come. You'll be miss and your name will be always carved in our hearts.

Posted by   on (March 17, 2014, 10:47 GMT)

You are one of the Greatest well performed Batsman and a Captain who's impossible to be replace. You will be really missed and forever unforgettable !!!

Posted by   on (March 17, 2014, 10:40 GMT)

Class act..fantastic player...God bless you great man.

Posted by Ali_Chaudhary on (March 17, 2014, 10:39 GMT)

Salute to greatest cricketer of Arilanka. Way ahead of overrated Sanga.

Posted by android_user on (March 17, 2014, 10:23 GMT)

Mahela-father of late cuts(one of the best slip fielder,one of the best captains in the cricket world) Sanga-father of cover drives(one of the best wicket keeper batsman) they will miss for ever.true cricket lovers can't simply hate legends. twin towers miss you guys! good luck to Sri Lankan cricket!

Posted by terry_2k6 on (March 17, 2014, 10:19 GMT)

Great to see both of these great players retiring from T20I to continue playing the longer formats of the game. In the current environment, it seems to be the reverse. These are 2 of the finest Test players of the last 20 years, at the very least, and possibly overall. Mahela Test average has fallen a bit but Kumar still averages mid 50's and both have over 10,000 test runs, which many may struggle to even achieve now, and puts them with the greats; Tendulkar, Dravid, Kallis, Chanderpaul, Lara, Border, Waugh, Ponting to have reached the milestone. Hopefully more success from both in Tests and One Dayers, and just as Dravid was, both are True Gentlemen of the game. Champions!!

Posted by Cricsnake on (March 17, 2014, 10:16 GMT)

Another good decision; this time by Mahela. One of the best T20 batsman ever we had. He's gonna retire on right time. We need a good replacement for him. Chandimal should take the responsibility after the T20 WC. Hope Dilshan too announce his retirement soon. End of an Era of SL cricket & we need a new generation to begin. The top three is leaving their place. Kule & Malinga too getting old. We need young guys urgently. Batting seems promising and the young guns will mature with time. Spin dept too looks The issue is not solved yet with fast bowling. Lakmal & Eranga can lead the youngsters but need very young pacers to be groomed under the Malinga & Kule for death overs. They are the best & most experienced we have. Hope SLC would consider this.

Posted by android_user on (March 17, 2014, 10:09 GMT)

first sanga now mahela surely we won't have 2 legends like them again ..... well done guys u served the country very well and now looking for the youngsters will be interesting but hard job for SL .... Thirimanne,chandimal,Mathews and kusal are already settled and I think priyanjan and vithanage will be great finds along with Angelo Perera and chaturanga de Silva

Posted by ramz30380 on (March 17, 2014, 9:52 GMT)

First Sanga, now Mahela... wht next will Dilshan follow suit?! Anyways... speculations apart... Mahela and Sanga friends on and off the field have given so much to international cricket - its good to see that they will be playing the other formats... its time for SLC to start grooming the younger brigade as the era of two elegant batsmen draws to a close... All the best Mahela! Thanks for the entertainment!

Posted by SandipManjrekar on (March 17, 2014, 9:47 GMT)

Best of all time Sri Lankan squad!! The success rate if you compare with earlier generation (even of Arjuna's fab team) is lot better & speaks about these two's contributions. I may be wrong to say but somehow I feel SLC had rough time with these 2 particularly in connection with player's contract issue. SLC's behavior is not justified at all.

Posted by AtulMore on (March 17, 2014, 9:34 GMT)

Two great players.. Sanga and Mahela.. really its very hard for SriLanka to find players like them.

Posted by   on (March 17, 2014, 9:25 GMT)

Not to worry, we have another Sanaga, Sanath coming up; Thirimanne and Kusal, Watch out !!

Posted by MaruthuDelft on (March 17, 2014, 9:25 GMT)

He must retire. He is not really interested in scoring runs. Once in a tournament. Once in a test series. Just when selectors start to think about dropping him. This has been going on for years. Absurd. He has already done a lot of damage by being a bad example. But one thing. He is a top all round batsman.

Posted by stormy16 on (March 17, 2014, 9:21 GMT)

Sad day for cricket, this guy was an amzing batter who could hurt your without playing a shot in anger. Big holes and opportunities for the next crop to come through.

Posted by wahabkhattak on (March 17, 2014, 9:17 GMT)

What a fascinating player he is. Whether its T20, ODI or Test Cricket, he had a cool & calm approach. I reckone S Lanka will never have guy to replace Mahela.

Posted by sumit1982 on (March 17, 2014, 9:10 GMT)

I think it is not good decision I think one player need to stick with another year and half .I think Lanka has good player but they doesn't have the player right now who can hold the innings in pressure situation.

Posted by   on (March 17, 2014, 8:58 GMT)

Based on most player of the matches Awards, Sanath Jayasuriya is the best T20 batsman in Sri Lanken cricket history, He has won SIX awards just from 31 Matches ( still 5th in the WORLD ). Second place goes to Mahela for his six awards from 49 Matches, Third place goes to Dilshan for his 5 awards form 55 matches, fourth place goes to Kusal for his FOUR awards just from 11 Matches ( what a achievemant by a young Man). Fifth place goes to Tisara for his 3 awards and Sixth place goes to SANGA for his TWO awards in 50 Matches..

When go to 50 over format, SANATH again takes the first place for his 48 Awards ( Second in the world ) from 445 matches, Second place goes to Aravinda de silva for his 30 awards from 299 matches.Third place is Sangakkara for his 26 Awards from 369 Matches.Fourth place takes Arjuna for his 24 awards in 269 matches.Fifth is Attapattu for his 20 Awards in 268 matches and Sixth is Mahela for his 19 Awars from 412 Matches.

Posted by   on (March 17, 2014, 8:55 GMT)

The True Legends, they may have good stats but the best thing about them was their attitude towards the game. They were so down to earth and that is the trademark of Sri Lankan cricket. I do not see any other country whose players have been so humble and controversy free.

Sri Lankan players are not cocky at all and thats true with these two legends also. Salute to both of you. You will be remembered.

Posted by priceless1 on (March 17, 2014, 8:40 GMT)

If MJ and KS retires then SL will struggle even against the teams like Nepal because none of the other batsmen know how to play Spin

Posted by wapuser on (March 17, 2014, 8:36 GMT)

True legends of the game retiring (mahela and sanga)...It was an absolute pleasure watching you play..Now the true test begins for Sri Lanka. ..Dey need to fill 2 boots....nt easy..This puts extra pressure on sl to win d wc for the legends. ..question is how ll they cope up with this extra pressure????

Posted by cricket_slcsupport on (March 17, 2014, 8:34 GMT)

Close of an elegant career in T20. We as fan's hope & pray that you along with Sanga would win atleast either the T20 WC or ICC world cup in 2015 before you retire. All the Best.

Posted by Rawanaa on (March 17, 2014, 8:26 GMT)

One of the grate captain of srilanka team,the classy batsman, real gentleman and the legend that is MAHELA JAYAWARDANE.... Love to watch when you are playing your unique shots and the attitude you are generating through the game with youngsters... We gonna miss those things in T20 but wish you from the bottom of the heart to play other 2 formats... We Srilankan fans are with your forever... love or hate him we dont care.... no matter what.... he is a REAL LEGEND and REAL SON OF MOTHER SRILANKA.... pls publish

Posted by 9ST9 on (March 17, 2014, 8:23 GMT)

We can say he could have played 'one more' but at the end of the day we have to respect these players who do not have to be pushed out of teams and who do not hang in there for records and personal milestones.

Posted by tearshan on (March 17, 2014, 8:22 GMT)

I do not know why I am so unlucky these days..I lost people who were really closed to me during past few adding two more to that list.sanga and mahela..eventhough they are not my family members , loosing them will mean lot to me and other diehard fans. We were growing with them.we were the ones who took fake cold and stayed at home to watch them playing..we were the ones who fought for match tickets to see them batting..we were the ones who wept once they got out..But time has come to accept the theory of life. Nothing is permanent..that is life!

Posted by Dr.Lakson on (March 17, 2014, 8:20 GMT)

It would have been better for the two to have phased out their retirement so that some experience would remain in the squad. Unfortunately now Dilshan might think that it would be his responsibility to carry on for a while to help in the transition. Having a player like Sanga in the squad even if does not play regularly would go a long way for the young guns to learn about his strict work ethic! Unfortunately the cash strapped SLC may not want that to happen so that they can cut down on the contracts payments. I do sense a bearing from the current contract issued on theses to retirements. Hope the media can get it out!.

Posted by 9ST9 on (March 17, 2014, 8:19 GMT)

Most Sri Lankan fans have seen a World Cup triumph. The only regret SL fan's have is not to have seen either of these two legends lift a World cup (2007,2011).

Posted by   on (March 17, 2014, 8:18 GMT)

so sad news to sri lankan cricket and world but we must accept his decision. we miss you mahela.... thank you very much for your valuable service to t20i.. but pls dont stop ODI & Test until 2020 ok

Posted by   on (March 17, 2014, 8:03 GMT)

What a shocking news. Thanks for your very valuble service to Srilankan team. You are one of a very rare batsman with amazing ability to strike ball all over the ground. Your batting is treat to watch. My heartiest congratulation Mahela(sanga both)

Posted by   on (March 17, 2014, 7:58 GMT)

One really good batsman !! mahela & sanga, you wil be missed.

Posted by android_user on (March 17, 2014, 7:57 GMT)

end of an era ..two of the greatest cricketers...i'make affraid how long they will play other two formats... sanga and mahela ...they have an era written on their names in cricketing history .....thanks for all you have done .. # sl fans.

Posted by Lakpj on (March 17, 2014, 7:56 GMT)

@asgar.ali What is BD got to do here, BD allowed a double century to Mahela and a triple century to Sanga. Are you referring to that?

Posted by Cricket_Kar on (March 17, 2014, 7:55 GMT)

Great legend of the cricket.. Like to see him playing more ODI and Test matches.

Posted by Lord.emsworth on (March 17, 2014, 7:53 GMT)

Doesn't have the Viv Richards or Jayasuriya type of power, but a batsmen who played/plays wonderfully eye catching deft strokes all around the wicket. One of Sri Lanka's absolute best and successful batsmen. He will be missed in T20.

Posted by   on (March 17, 2014, 7:38 GMT)

I wish if Mahela can play forever.... for me he is the best cricketer sri lanka ever produce. Always played for Team and country ..Hats off Mahela. You will be missed and hard to fill that void .

Posted by   on (March 17, 2014, 7:34 GMT)

Well, they were not getting paid by SLC any way. Plus, as for Mahela, even his family was tired of seeing him on the pitch. Too late, but correct decision.

Posted by chapathishot on (March 17, 2014, 7:33 GMT)

unlike Sanga ,he is a big match player and will be missed for his performance in finals atleast

Posted by   on (March 17, 2014, 7:31 GMT)

How many cricket legends we have been came a cross each and every cricketers should get retirement.

Posted by shakeena on (March 17, 2014, 7:29 GMT)

We WILL miss the two princesses of the Sri Lankan Cricket.. SANGA & MAhela the all mighty will praise you both for everything you have given to us..

Posted by rizwan1981 on (March 17, 2014, 7:25 GMT)

The Sri Lankan cricket board's attitude towards players would have contributed to Mahela and Sanga's retirement

Posted by Maliduke on (March 17, 2014, 7:23 GMT)

One gets the feeling that SL batting wil struggle as these 2 quits the game different format one by one. The transition period will not be smooth, any way the young guns has to learn the things faster in next 1 year bcoz they may hang their boots come WC 15. Thirumanne is ok to open along with Kusual perera but they got to address other spots in the batting line up.

Posted by   on (March 17, 2014, 7:20 GMT)

such a good player and very nice man.we never forget your efforts in each world cup..hats off for this legend.we miss u mahela .. from an pakistan

Posted by lionslanka on (March 17, 2014, 7:19 GMT)

It's the BD effect!! BD power forced many players (so called top players) to retire.

Posted by   on (March 17, 2014, 7:17 GMT)

good news but the how Mahela is the best t20 batsmen in sl team.

Posted by CUPULW on (March 17, 2014, 7:16 GMT)

Is this "news" ?

I thought the trio Mahela, Kumar and Dilshan had already informed SLC they will retire from T20I after the world cup in B'desh.

Also that they'll hope to play at CWC 2015 and retire from ODIs.

In fact there are six guys who will retire by 2015 : in addition to the batting trio, Malinga, Kulasekara and Herath are also in line to retire from ODIs and T20s.

Dilly has already retired from tests. Given we play very few tests, maybe the others will also retire from tests as well.

After 2015 sri lanka may have a really new-look team (as PJ is also getting on).

Suddenly both batting and bowling in ODI & T20 cricket will be thin....

Posted by android_user on (March 17, 2014, 7:13 GMT)

best captain i ever seen thank for what u did.

Posted by   on (March 17, 2014, 7:10 GMT)

it's for Sri Lanka not good news

Posted by dineshworld on (March 17, 2014, 7:10 GMT)

where is leg spinner dhanjay, he is mystery bowler like mendis.. should give a chance.

Posted by   on (March 17, 2014, 7:10 GMT)

Hats off to both legends.. We all really enjoyed the way you to played in all three formats. And it's honour to have two legends like you in our team.. And as you leave in high time where young talent is emerging in SL cricket , you have proved the gentlemen character within you two..

It's now time for Angi, Thisara, Kusal, Thiri and Chandi to take the reign and keep the momentum of the team.. Continue from where Sanga & Mahela stopped

Posted by Abubvs on (March 17, 2014, 7:07 GMT)

From an Indian--I have been a big fan of Mahela's batting..perhaps the most sily player of the present generation..Some of his shots r truly unique n amazing..He has shown to the world that u dont need Power Hitting Style in the shorter forms aof cricket also.

We are all going to miss u in this form. Thanks for the wodnerful enetrtainment dished out to the cricketing fraternity

Posted by nagarjun51 on (March 17, 2014, 7:00 GMT)

Srilanka team will be in shatters after this T20 since 2 legends who helped srilanka in each game retiring at same time...No one can replace their places in the current squad...Bow to both players who still contributing to success for srilanka in ODI & in Tests....Love u sanga&MAHELA from hardcore INDIAN FAN

Posted by   on (March 17, 2014, 6:52 GMT)

All good things must come to an end, but to honor him and Sanga hope SL wins the T-20 WC which they richly deserve as farewell presents for their service to the nation!

Posted by Vimal_Dosala on (March 17, 2014, 6:51 GMT)

Kudos to the man !! Man with the most sublime touch in the game .

Posted by lakshasurya on (March 17, 2014, 6:49 GMT)

As both sangakara and jayawardane will not be there in srilanka line up. We will be missing them both Definately srilankan side wii lack their experience

Posted by nothingnew on (March 17, 2014, 6:47 GMT)

I am sure ,Dilshan will announce same thing very soon .Great 2 cricketers will be retiring ,

Posted by baji003 on (March 17, 2014, 6:45 GMT)

Hats off to both the legends., they are real gentlemen., Young SL team had won a big title and seniors have understood that they are evolved and decided to leave it to youngsters., Perfect time., also SL contract issue allowed them to do same., They will be stars always.,

Posted by   on (March 17, 2014, 6:43 GMT)

It is a good call now, hope we win the T20 world cup for them! A great farewell for our former captain who did enormouse service for the game of cricket!

Posted by   on (March 17, 2014, 6:40 GMT)

Thanks Mayya for the Memories that you have given to us.. We will Never forget your efforts in each WC. And this will make a real SWANSONG for you and your good friend SANGA.. Srilankan People are waiting. And we have an outstanding chance. Bring The Glory Back to the cricket crazy Island.. All The Best. Go Get em LIONS..!!!

P.S: Cricinfo Please Publish

Posted by   on (March 17, 2014, 6:39 GMT)

End of an era in SL cricket as far as T20I is concerned.... Enjoy the final few matches in which Dilshan, Sanga and Jayawardene will play together.....

Posted by android_user on (March 17, 2014, 6:32 GMT)

nah nah not gud news both of them leave niw

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