By Srian Obeyesekere
Former India captain Mohammed Azharuddin yesterday paid a glowing tribute to Sri Lanka Cricket for its bold step in gaining rights to staging the Asia Cup 2023 in Sri Lanka which was a far reaching move upping cricket in the Asian region as a whole.
One of the most stylish batsmen the game has produced, Azharuddin (60), now cricketer turned politician having joined the Congress Party in 2009, who is one of the VIPs in town on the invitation of SLC to grace the ongoing Lanka Premier League Tournament, addressing the media yesterday at the R. Premadasa International Cricket Stadium during the ongoing matches, said, “It is a privilege to be here on the invitation of Sri Lanka Cricket to grace the LPL along with former Pakistan stars Wasim Akram and Javed Miandad. I take this opportunity to thank the SLC led Shammi Silva led administration and must say that they had done a tremendous job to getting the nod from the Asian Cricket Council to stage the Asia Cup this year in Sri Lanka along with Pakistan. This move must be viewed as a great step forward to further upping the development of the game not only in Sri Lanka, but the entire Asian region.”
He went on to observe that the LPL, a version of the Indian Premier League, was a boon for local talent and bound to make a big impact in Sri Lanka progressively in the next few years. It was a talent driving window for young local cricketers to play and gain recognition to the bigger stage while also strengthening their lot by way of financial remuneration. In that respect the LPL served in enhancing financial revenue of Sri Lanka Cricket as well.
Sri Lanka will host nine Asia Cup matches including the India-Pakistan fixture on September 2 in Kandy.
Azharuddin captained India in 47 Test matches and 174 ODIs having succeeded Krishnamachari Srikkanth in 1989, and won esteem as one of the game’s most dextrous leg side batsmen in the mould of Australia’s Greg Chappell and Zaheer Abbas.
Asia Cup 2023 Fixtures
|30-AUG||PAKISTAN v NEPAL||MULTAN, PAK|
|31-AUG||BANGLADESH v SRI LANKA||KANDY, SL|
|2-SEP||PAKISTAN v INDIA||KANDY, SL|
|3-SEP||BANGLADESH v AFGHANISTAN||LAHORE, PAK|
|4-SEP||INDIA v NEPAL||KANDY, SL|
|5-SEP||AFGHANISTAN v SRI LANKA||LAHORE, PAK|
|6-SEP||A1 v B2||LAHORE, PAK|
|9-SEP||B1 v B2||COLOMBO, SL|
|10-SEP||A1 v A2||COLOMBO, SL|
|12-SEP||A2 v B1||COLOMBO, SL|
|14-SEP||A1 v B1||COLOMBO, SL|
|15-SEP||A2 v B2||COLOMBO, SL|