End of Pubudu Dassanayake’s reign as Nepal's nat'l cricket team coachNepali national cricket team on Friday made an emotional return from their Abu Dhabi tour that brought an end to Pubudu Dassanayake’s reign as Nepal coach.
Nepali national cricket team on Friday made an emotional return from their Abu Dhabi tour that brought an end to Pubudu Dassanayake’s reign as Nepal coach.
Dassanayake is quitting Nepal from next month, ending a successful four-year stint that saw him guide the country to its maiden ICC World Twenty20 appearance in 2014 and leap to the ICC World Cricket League Championship (WCLC)—a premier one-day tournament for non-Test playing teams—from Division 4.
Dassanayake couldn’t taste victory in his last assignment, losing both the second round WCLC matches against Papua New Guinea (PNG) but he had no qualms. The Sri Lanka-born Canadian was emotional when asked about his stint after his team landed at the TIA.
“Time has gone really fast and its an emotional time for me but this is how the game goes,” said Dassanayake. “There have been lots of good memories, some lifetime memories. I may not get this team and the bunch of players anywhere in this world,” said Dassanayake with a sense of pride. “I am really happy to be a part of Nepal cricket and coach these players. But I have to move on. I really like to see Nepal scale new heights in days ahead,” the coach added.
Dassanayake leaves as one of the most successful coaches of the country in any sports discipline. He fell out of favour with cricket governing body of Nepal. In a diplomatic tone, Dassanayake hinted that there was still possibility he could remain the coach provided his words are taken seriously.
“There are some personal reasons for me to leave Nepal,” said Dassanayake. “I want to spend some time with my family. The other reason is the support that I didn’t have to take the team forward. When I don’t have the ammunition to get this game going, there is no point to hang around,” he said. Dassanayake stressed on the need for support from cricket administration to take Nepali cricket forward.
“With 10 matches left in the WCLC, we are in a tight corner because we are playing at this level for the first time,” he continued. “We are in a situation where we are stuck because there is no proper structure. If we really put up a plan, its not hard to become a full member country in the next eight to 10 years but the plan has to be implemented right from today,” the coach said.
Skipper Paras Khadka said Nepal will greatly miss Dassanayake but urged everyone concerned to get focused on cricket. “We are going to miss him. Everyone knows the controversies surrounding coach because it has been going on for more than one year. There is no need to elaborate on that. It’s important for us to focus on cricket,” said Khadka.
“The controversies surrounding the coach and captain were blown out of proportion. We are doing good as a team and our strength is the unity amongst us, which still remain intact. We need better preparation for our future. Its not only about preparing the national team but establishing Nepali cricket in a proper shape in the next five years,” said Khadka.