As T20 cricket has gained a foothold and the focus of fan engagement has switched to the T20 format, the 50-over format has suffered a significant loss in relevance and popularity. This is because the attention of the game has changed to the T20 format. Despite this, things were much different even only 10 years ago. The One-Day International (ODI) format, which was much liked and followed, encompassed competitions like the World Cup. Check breaking news Indian cricket team as world cup approaches.
This post takes a look at the One-Day International careers of Sri Lanka’s best cricketers and ranks them according to the amount of matches they’ve played.
Mahela Jayawardene (443 MATCHES)
When talking about Sri Lankan cricket, Mahela Jayawardene’s name just has to come up at some point. Jayawardene played in 443 one-day internationals (ODIs) over 18 fruitful years, which is the most by any Sri Lankan and the second-most ever. He is ranked second all-time. He finished his career with a total of 12650 runs scored at an average of 33.37, including 19 centuries, 77 scores of fifty or more, and a career-high 144. On January 24, 1998, Jayawardene made his debut in a One-Day International match in Colombo against Zimbabwe. The match was played against Zimbabwe. Up until March 2015, he competed in one-day internationals before calling it a career.
Sanath Jayasuriya (441 MATCHES)
Next up comes Sanath Jayasuriya, who is regarded as both one of the most courageous and quick openers in all of cricket. Jayasuriya made his one-day international debut in 1989 against Australia, and he played in his last match in 2011 against England before calling it quits. Both his run total (1,366 at a rate of 32.51) and his wicket total (320) are extraordinary. He also bagged 320 wickets. He indeed did function as a versatile player for the whole of his professional career.
Kumar Sangakkara (397 MATCHES)
His statistics demonstrate that he was superior than Kumar Sangakkara, one of the finest left-handers in the history of cricket. He was a left-handed batsman. He was pretty beautiful, and it was entertaining to watch him. In terms of appearances for Sri Lanka in One-Day Internationals, he played in 397 of them, which places him third all-time. After making his debut in a One-Day International in the year 2000, Sangakkara continued to play the game until the year 2015, during which time he amassed 13,975 runs at an average of 41.96 during his career. In addition to his skills as a batsman, Sangakkara also holds the record for most dismissals made by a wicketkeeper in a single-day international competition with 482.
Muttiah Muralidharan (343 MATCHES)
When you think of a spin bowling guru, Muralidharan is perhaps the first person who comes to mind. That was the impression that he conveyed. He represented Sri Lanka in 343 One-Day Internationals during his career, which lasted from 1993 up until 2011. Muralidharan is the first bowler from Sri Lanka to have taken 500 scalps in one-day internationals. He currently holds the record for most ODI wickets taken with 523, making him the leader in this category. He was able to complete it at an average pace of 23.07, which was an improvement of an average of 4. His greatest bowling figures were 7 for 30, which was a 10-wicket haul and was his best performance overall.
Tillakaratne Dilshan (330 MATCHES)
The next hitter to bat is Tillakaratne Dilshan, who is known for being a fierce and vicious opener. Dilshan scored a total of 10290 runs for Sri Lanka in 330 One-Day Internationals played between the years 1999 and 2016, averaging 39.27 runs per game. During the World Cup in 2011, he contributed to Sri Lanka’s journey to the final game by scoring 500 runs at an incredible average of 62.50. This enabled Sri Lanka to win the tournament. His flexibility is shown by the fact that he has collected 106 wickets throughout his career.
Chaminda Vaas (321 MATCHES)
Only Chaminda Vaas, who bowls at a medium speed, was good enough to make the team. The fact that he is included on the list is evidence of how skilled he is as a bowler. He had a strong command of both the line and the length. During his 15-year career as a fast bowler, Vaas participated in 321 One-Day Internationals for Sri Lanka, a remarkable achievement that is unmatched by any other player. He collected 399 wickets while maintaining an economy rate of 4.18 and averaging 27.45 runs per over.
Aravinda de Silva (308 MATCHES)
Next, we have Aravinda de Silva, who was the captain of the Sri Lankan team that won the World Cup in 1996. Silva was an extremely important member of Sri Lanka’s One-Day International squad during the 1990s. He played for Sri Lanka in a total of 308 one-day international matches between the years 1984 and 2003. He finished his career with 9284 runs scored at a 34.90 average and 106 wickets taken behind the stumps.
Arjuna Ranatunga (269 MATCHES)
Arjuna Ranatunga, the captain of the Sri Lankan side that won the World Cup in 1996, is held in very high esteem by the people of his nation. Because of his hitting, leadership, and attitude, he quickly became a fan favourite. The whole team was held to a very high standard by his method of leadership. Between the years 1982 and 1999, he competed for Sri Lanka in One-Day Internationals (ODIs), during which time he amassed 7456 runs for the team at an average of 35.84 and took 79 wickets with the ball.
Marvan Atapattu (268 MATCHES)
Marvan Atapattu, who once captained Sri Lanka, got off to a shaky start in his international career, but he finally established himself as one of the most reliable openers in the country. Atapattu made his debut in one-day international competition in 1990, and he continued to compete in the sport until 2007. He often played with the powerful Sanath Jayasuriya throughout his career. He played in 268 games and had an overall run total of 8529, averaging 37.57 runs per game. He had amassed more than a thousand by the time he decided to call it quits.
Upul Tharanga (234 MATCHES)
One of the players on the squad is Upul Tharanga, who also hits leadoff. The explosive nature of Tharanga’s batting style combined with his exceptional strokeplay made him a genuine entertainer. Tharanga participated in 234 One-Day Internationals for Sri Lanka between the years 2005 and 2019, amassing 6941 runs at an average of 33.85 with 15 hundreds. This places him ninth overall among Sri Lankan hitters in terms of most runs scored.