Sri Lankan legend who lived most part of his cricketing career under the shadow of the spin wizard Muttiah Muralidharan has finally decided to bid adieu to the international cricket. Rangana Herath has been the man behind the scenes in taking the Sri Lankan unit to a series of glories since his dominance in the test cricket would be playing his last in the home series against the Englishmen.
Rangana Herath to hang up his boots
In his post-match speech after taking a gutsy six-wicket haul to hand South Africa a 199 run pounding, Herath announced that he will retire from Test cricket after one last hurrah in the form of the series against England coming later this year.
Speaking of the exhilaration of beating South Africa in a Test series after 12 long years, he said, “Of course, pleased. Especially winning the game and the series against the No. 2 team. I like Galle and SSC as hunting grounds. There was not much spin as the ball got softer, but we bowled well throughout the series.”
And just when everyone was grateful for Herath being the diligent humble servant of Sri Lankan cricket and would probably be the one to lead them into a resurgent future in Test cricket after a few years of disappointment as a team, he dropped the bombshell.
“Everybody has the time to go and that’s why I have decided to stop cricket. There is one more series to go against England, hope to do well,” said Rangana Herath.
The rise of Herath!
Ever since Muttiah Muralitharan stepped away in 2010, Herath led the Sri Lankan bowlers, and while he was fairly successful against every side in the world, toiling equally hard be the sandpits of Galle or the unforgiving strip of Perth, he is identified as the chief tormentor of the Pakistani side, taking 101 wickets against them.
The wizened left-arm spinner deceived batsmen with his canny guile and was known for his ability to set them up with floating deliveries that spun away before one thundered with the angle into the batsmen’s pads or sent the stumps rattling.
With 430 Test wickets and another series to go, he will comfortably end as Sri Lanka’s second-highest wicket-taker in history, an impressive achievement for a player who, for a great part of his career had to play the second fiddle.
A loved figure across the cricket-mad island nation, Herath is currently the only active Test cricketer who debuted in the twentieth century, and his fighting spirit epitomized the unconventional way his side went about winning matches.
The most memorable of all his successes with the side was the series victory in England in 2014, where Herath aside from his pinpoint bowling, helped Sri Lanka to hold on to a draw in a thrilling Test at Lord’s.
Let’s hope that the England series turns out well for the Sri Lankan legend.