South African Nick Pothas (left) spells out his plans to the media after taking up his new appointment at SLC as fielding coach | (Pic by Chathura S Kodikara)

Sri Lanka Cricket’s officials on Wednesday (August 10) spelt out ambitious plans for the future and announced South African Nick Pothas and former national cricketer Chaminda Vaas having taken up coaching roles with the cricket establishment.

Pothas will play a vital role as fielding coach while Vaas will have his hands full delivering in the role assigned to him as fast bowling consultant. SLC Consultant Aravinda de Silva spelt out the role for Pothas underscoring the fact that the former Hampshire cricketer will have to do a lot of internal travelling. “I want Pothas to concentrate on the grassroots level and work with these players because fielding should be a natural thing. It can’t be learned when you come to play at national level,” stressed de Silva.

Cricket in Sri Lanka is experiencing a bout of sunshine after the national team demolished Australia in the first two games in a three-Test series. “I am super excited to join the Sri Lanka team at such an exciting time,” said the new recruit of SLC when speaking to media representatives attending a media briefing at SLC. Pothas affirmed that fielding can influence the game in the middle and added that the language that players use on the field when fielding shows how prepared they are. “We need to change attitudes. A lot of hard work needs to be put in to fielding,” he said.

The performance that the national team turned in against Australia has served as a balm that is healing the bruises suffered in the series loss against England. The performances of the national team against the Aussies have also given the islanders a cause for celebration. “The SLC plans to invite all past cricketers and past captains for the Third Test. I invite the cricket loving public to come to the ground during the final Test and show solidarity with the national cricketers who are playing under the banner one team, one nation,” said Sumathipala. The third Test between Sri Lanka and Australia will be played from August 13 to 17 in Colombo.

The big boss of SLC might be on cloud nine at the moment, but former batting legend De Silva put the players in their place by stating that the Sri Lankans should carry forward this good work of winning on turning pitches at home and now win on fast tracks that are made in countries like Australia. “I see these victories as a small improvement,” he said.
De Silva speaking about Vaas’ appointment said that the former cricketer will work with development squads, so that junior players will be ready to perform when they are given an opportunity to play in the senior side.