The Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) board has released the list of its centrally contracted players which includes 19 players. The players have been divided into five categories between A1 and C2. The top category A1 has only four players. Sri Lanka Test captain Dimuth Karunaratne, vice-captain Dhananjaya de Silva, pacer Dushmantha Chameera, and all-rounder Wanindu Hasaranga have been awarded the top contract.
Meanwhile, Niroshan Dickwella, Kusal Mendis, and Danushka Gunathilaka, who were banned from international cricket have been kept in the lowest category i.e. C2. The trio was banned after they were found guilty of breaching bio-bubble restrictions on the team's England tour last year. The second group is B1 and has as many as six cricketers including ex-captain Angelo Mathews.
SLC CEO Ashley de Silva also informed that all the cricketers have signed contracts, unlike last year when the players had refused to sign the contract papers after being offered a performance-based contract. In addition to that, the Sri Lanka Cricket Board had also raised the benchmark for fitness levels which wasn’t welcomed as well last year. The board has also formed a separate category for domestic cricketers.
A1 – Dimuth Karunaratne, Dhananjaya de Silva, Dushmantha Chameera, and Wanindu Hasaranga.
B1 – Pathum Nissanka, Lahiru Thirimanne, Dasun Shanaka, Dinesh Chandimal, Kusal Perera, Angelo Mathews.
B2 – Lasith Embuldeniya, Ramesh Mendis, Charith Asalanka
C1 – Vishwa Fernando, Avishka Fernando, Chamika Karunaratne.
C2 – Niroshan Dickwella, Danushka Gunathilaka, and Kusal Mendis.
Domestic Players – Praveen Jayawickrama, Oshada Fernando, Bhanuka Rajapaksa, Lakshan Sandakan, Maheesh Theekshana, Nuwan Pradeep, Binura Fernando, Lahiru Kumara, Minod Bhanuka, Kamindu Mendis.
Sri Lanka not in top 5 teams in any format
Talking about Sri Lanka's performance over the past few years, the Island nation has failed to impress. They are not in the top 5 teams in any of the formats. While they are placed at No.7 in Test rankings, Sri Lanka are No.8 in ODIs. They are placed at No.10 in T2oI rankings.