Sri Lanka’s first Test captain Bandula Warnapura has passed away
By Sangeeta Viswas
on Mon Oct 18 2021
Sri Lanka’s first Test captain Bandula Warnapura has passed away. Bandula who led Sri Lanka in his first Test, passed away on Monday (October 18) while undergoing treatment at a private hospital. The 68-year-old played four Tests and 12 ODIs for his country.
The former opener made his ODI debut in the 1975 World Cup game against the West Indies at Old Trafford. In his next game, he scored 31 off 39 balls against the formidable pace duo of Dennis Lillee and Jeff Thomson.
In the next World Cup in 1979, he captained Sri Lanka to a famous victory against India. He scored his highest ODI score of 77 against Pakistan in the 1981–82 season, but it went in vain as Sri Lanka lost by eight wickets.
Wrnapura captained Sri Lanka in their first Test against England in Colombo in 1982. He faced Sri Lanka’s first ball and scored his first run in Test cricket.
In that game, he also achieved the unique record of opening and bowling (second innings) in the same Test match. BandulaWernapura soon decided to tour South Africa with the rebel side.
The 68-year-old made his first-class debut against Indian universities in 1970. The turning point in his first-class career came during the 1973–74 season when he scored 154 against Pakistan Under-25s.
At the time of that season, he also accumulated an outstanding score of 92 against Pakistan XI in the four-day game. Pakistan XI had Test match bowlers like Asif Masood, Salim Altaf, and Intikhab Alam.
When he retired from the game, he served as the coach of the Sri Lankan set-up and then became the Director of Coaching.