At a juncture Sri Lanka Women’s Cricket is seeking to turn a new corner and come out of a bad patch so as to bridge an existing performance gap between the top cricket playing countries, 21-year old Harshitha Madavi has proved to be the new find in providing a much needed impetus to the mainstream Sri Lanka Women’s team.
A lass who took to cricket more or less by playing friendly boy’s cricket in her as a 10-year old, her discovery from Colombo’s premier cricket playing girls’ school Anula Vidyalaya in Nugegoda, came with her performances as a promising batswoman in inter-girl’s school tournaments.
Having made her foray to the Sri Lanka Women’s team in 2016 debuting in ODIs against Australia in a home series, and T20 debut against India at Mohali the same year, Harshitha has since developed into a potential. The big moment in her career came in this year’s Women’s Emerging Asia Cup where she was elevated to captain the side which did well to emerge runners-up to India by a close margin of 14 runs. The left handed Harshitha, batting in the pivotal No.3 slot, displayed her prowess to win the coveted Player of the Series award beating players from leading teams like champions India and Pakistan. She struck successive half centuries including 55 against India in their opening match and 53 against Bangladesh in a must win match in taking her side into the finals against India. She became the highest run getter in the tournament scoring 147 in three innings averaging 47 in making Sri Lanka the second best team next to champions India. In a close final against the Indians, Harshitha top scored with 39 thereby underlining her durability as a batswoman for the future of Sri Lanka cricket.
Born on June 28, Harshitha Madavi Dissanayake Samarawickrama is a right arm slow medium pace bowler. Having first schooled at Sangamitha Vidyalaya and then Gothami Balika Vidyalaya from where she moved to Anula Vidyalaya, she represents Colts CC and Combined Province Women at domestic level. She is regarded as a bright prospect by national coach Harsha de Silva to be the future torchbearer of Sri Lanka women’s cricket.
By Srian Obeyesekere
-The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of Sri Lanka Cricket-