A busy middle-order batsman and a capable left-arm spinner, Milinda Siriwardana broke through to the national side in 2015 after several years of encouraging domestic returns. Outstanding form in the 2015 Premier League Tournament prompted his elevation. He was the first-class season's top scorer with 1144 runs at an average of 67.29, and had also claimed 20 wickets for Badureliya Cricket Club.
Siriwardana showcased his attacking flair when he made his ODI and T20 debuts during Pakistan's mid-year tour of Sri Lanka, and memorably struck his first international fifty in 25 deliveries during a breakneck 114-run ODI stand with Angelo Mathews. A successful initiation in those formats paved the route to his Test debut against West Indies later the same year.
He had made his first-class debut for Sebastianites Cricket and Athletic Club in 2005, and had played for Sri Lanka A for several years before getting his international break. Siriwardana came close to national recognition was when he was included in the 30-member provisional squad for the 2009 World T20, but he was left out of the final team. That call-up came close on the heels of his maiden first-class ton, 135 for Basnahira South against Ruhuna in the SLC Inter-Provincial Tournament, a match in which he also claimed five wickets.
Andrew Fidel Fernando