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Isuru Udana retires from international cricket




“I believe the time has come for me to make way for the next generation of players” © LPL

Allrounder Isuru Udana has announced his retirement from international cricket, conveying his decision to Sri Lanka Cricket through a letter on Friday.

Udana, 33, will continue to play domestic cricket, and will be available for franchise tournaments, starting with the CPL, starting in late August. Udana has not made public the reasons for deciding to retire, but a desire to spend more time with family is understood to be a factor.

“I believe the time has come for me to make way for the next generation of players,” Udana told SLC, according to a statement from the board. ”It is with immense pride and passion, and unfathomable commitment that I have represented and served my country.”

The news came as something of a surprise, as Udana had not only been largely free of injury over the past three years, but also had a place in both Sri Lanka’s limited-overs squads. He played one ODI and two T20Is in the just-concluded series against India, and had also played in all three T20Is against England in June.

Having debuted during Sri Lanka’s run to the final in the 2009 T20 World Cup, it was only since 2017 that Udana had a regular place in Sri Lanka’s white-ball squads.

His bowling – which typically features a lot of slower balls – was especially valued in T20s, though he was also an excellent fielder, and was capable of clean striking from the lower order. He hit one half-century in each of the white-ball formats for Sri Lanka, including a stunning 84 not out off 48 balls in a T20I against South Africa in 2019.

Udana has now become the second Sri Lanka allrounder to retire from international cricket in the past three months – in May, Thisara Perera had stepped away from the game, partly due to lack of opportunities with the national side.

Andrew Fidel Fernando is ESPNcricinfo’s Sri Lanka correspondent. @afidelf


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