Arnold's ability to adapt his game to the situation makes him an ideal No.6 in limited overs cricket and an unselfish approach explains the high esteem in which he is held by teammates. A cool head under pressure helps when chasing and he adds great value in field with a safe pair of hands. He can also bowl useful offbreaks.
A tall, angular left-hander and a patient accumulator, Arnold began his Test career as an opener but despite solid scores then, and on his recall for the Asian Test Championship two years later, he lost out to Marvan Atapattu as Sanath Jayasuriya's partner. Short of runs by late 2000, he dropped into the lower middle order. When a loss of form and confidence from Jayasuriya gave Arnold another chance at the top of the order in 2002, he scored 62 and 109 in a valiant rearguard at Old Trafford. Failure in the series that followed left him on the sidelines for long periods after the 2003 World Cup but Arnold made his way back into the team for the home series against Australia. Despite making 51 not out in his last ODI against Zimbabwe, Arnold was dropped from the ODI and Test teams in July 2004. The seven-man Ashantha de Mel selection committee wanted to blood new talent and Arnold's future looked bleak for a while. But he worked hard on his game in the nets and started to score heavily in domestic cricket. Finally, with his replacements failing to impress, he won a recall for the New Zealand tour in December 2004. However, pressure from the young brigade - the likes of Tillakaratne Dilshan - left him fighting for his place. His Test role went first but, after a poor tour of England in 2006 (following some promising efforts in Australia), he was dumped. But experience can never be discounted in major tournaments and he found a spot in the 2007 World Cup squad.
Arnold retired after the World Cup final and joined the unofficial Indian Cricket League, playing for the Chennai Superstars and ICL World XI. A ban on he and four other Sri Lankans was lifted in September 2008, meaning Arnold was free to play domestic cricket back home. He has also dabbled in radio commentary.
Charlie Austin September 2008