While some of these striking photographs have been presented before in Cricketique or in Thuppahi, they have not been assembled under one roof before. They are significant both for political and cricketing reasons.
In cricketing terms we had a talented troupe of players back home so that the final choice of fourteen left very competent players out of scene. The preparations were quite remarkable. The larger pool of players was sent to Nuwara Eliya in order to acclimatize themselves while practicing at Radalla.
Standing left-to-right: David Heyn, Roy Dias, Sarath Fernando, Neil Perera (Asst Manager), Raja Wickremasinhe (Fitness Trainer( and KMT Perera (Manager) Squatting left-to right: Duleep Mendis, Bandula Warnapura, Ajit de Silva, Anura Ranasinghe, Lalith Kaluperuma, Dennis Chanmugam, DS de Silva, Ranjit Fernando, Tony Opatha, Anura Tennekoon, HSM Pieris ….. Missing because traveling to Nuwara Eliya by car: Michael Tissera and Sunil Wettimuny
The team lost all three of their matches in round one. But they revealed their batting prowess in the match against a fearsome Australian side at Kennington Oval on )) June 1975 when they accumulated 276 runs for the loss of 4 wickets in the teeth of ‘bombfire’ and art — the artillery being Thomson, Lillee and Walker and the art being Ashley Mallett. That score was not enough to reach the Aussie total of 328 for 5 wkts. But the short scorecard does not tell readers that two Sri Lankan batsmen, Sunil Wettimuny and Duleep Mendis, were carried off the field injured and one ended up in hospital. Those ‘kills’ were effected by the fearsome Jeff Thomson – Thommo” to Aussie cricket fans.