Sri Lanka news August 21, 2014

Senanayake returns after remedial work on action

Sri Lanka Cricket hopes to have offspinner Sachithra Senanayake cleared by the ICC over the next few months, after biomechanics experts were confident his action had been sufficiently remedied.

Senanayake has returned to Sri Lanka after ten days of remedial work with human movement expert Darryl Foster at the University of Western Australia, after which he underwent an unofficial biomechanics test at the institute. The details of whether his remodeled action adheres to the ICC's playing conditions will not be known until a report from this test is generated by Foster's team over the next two weeks.

SLC had always planned to have Senanayake re-tested following the remedial work, and they will aim to set a fresh date for testing at Cardiff Metropolitan University, as long as the report supports that move. Foster is understood to have been satisfied with the changes in Senanayake's action but could not provide assurances on the exact degree of flex at each delivery until the test results were generated.

"SLC will be presenting Sachithra to the ICC accredited Cardiff University for clearance testing subject to the pending report from Perth," a board release said. "This report is expected to reach SLC within the next fortnight."

Foster's team had found that each of Senanayake's deliveries exceeded the permitted 15-degree limit before the remedial work, and suggested that routinely being asked to bowl in the Powerplay had played a role in the deterioration of his action since he was last tested, in 2011. A significant increase in flex was discovered when Senanayake had sought to change the length of his delivery in the middle of his bowling stride, particularly when batsmen were advancing down the pitch. Senanayake had not omitted any of his variations as part of the remedial process.

SLC hope to have Senanayake cleared by the ICC before England's limited-overs tour to Sri Lanka, which begins in November. The board is also hopeful the possible date of return will allow Senanayake to have his new action ingrained, before he plays international cricket again.

Senanayake was found to be flexing his elbow as much as 43 degrees in the Test he was found to be throwing, and he was consequently banned from international cricket last month. This is the second round of remedial work he has undertaken, after suspicions about the legality of his action had previously been raised on a 2011 A-team tour to England. On that occasion, Senanayake did remedial work with national spin bowling coach Piyal Wijetunge and was cleared to play after a test at the University of Western Australia.

Senanayake has been instrumental to Sri Lanka's limited-overs success in 2014, in the Asia Cup, World T20 and the bilateral series in England. The series against Pakistan, which begins on Saturday, will be the first international cricket he has missed as a result of the ban. Sri Lanka have no international cricket scheduled between the Pakistan tour and the England ODIs.

Andrew Fidel Fernando is ESPNcricinfo's Sri Lanka correspondent. @andrewffernando

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Kaz on August 22, 2014, 10:15 GMT

    I think a simple remedy will be to have a harness made that won't allow more than 51 degrees flex or something even simpler like a strip with uniform elasticity that will emit a beep if it is going to be stretched beyond the equivalent stretch of 15 degrees to alert the bowler himself. It is better to do something that work, because this is going to take the shine off SL's win each time the opposition coaches start talking about 'suspicious bowling action of Sachitra'.

  • Nuwan on August 22, 2014, 7:50 GMT

    Welcome back mate.... looking forward for your great successful run to be continued.

  • Dummy4 on August 22, 2014, 6:25 GMT

    Good Luck Sachi... Hope you will pass the test and come back to international cricket..

  • Dummy4 on August 22, 2014, 4:00 GMT

    All the best Senanayake! hope you return to ODI as fast as possible (Y)

  • Dummy4 on August 21, 2014, 21:12 GMT

    Actually if his action is around 43 degrees as found in the test, what did the Sri Lanka bowling coach notice the defect and correct his actions all this time. If then he's not suitable to be a notional bowling coach. If there is no such bowling coach the head coach must take up the responsibility.

  • Dummy4 on August 21, 2014, 19:50 GMT

    He is the top rank srilankan bowler in the ICC ODI and T20 ranking list. He should be a valuable asset for srilanka in the 2015 world cup. We miss you sachi. Please come back. Best of luck.

  • Android on August 21, 2014, 15:55 GMT

    good luck sachi..

  • Iraj on August 21, 2014, 15:25 GMT

    Wanna see him again in the T20 & ODI teams. Wish u all the best !

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