Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo
Sri Lanka batsman Mahela Jayawardene has announced that he will be retiring from Test cricket after the upcoming Test series against Pakistan in August.
This means that Jayawardene will only represent Sri Lanka in ODIs since he retired from Twenty20 Internationals in April this year.
Since his debut in 1997, Jayawardene has been an integral part of Sri Lanka’s middle order, which has resulted in him scoring 11,493 Test runs at a brilliant average of 50.18.
In the 145 Test matches he has played, Jayawardene has also scored 33 centuries and 48 half-centuries.
“It was not an easy decision to make given that it has been a great privilege and honour representing my country during the past 18 years,” Jayawardene said. “But I believe this is the right time.”
Jayawardene informed chief selector Sanath Jayasuriya about his decision to retire from the longest format of the game after he realised that Sri Lanka will not be playing any Tests at home for almost a year following the two-Test series against Pakistan.
“He called me and said that he wants to play four more matches and retire from Test cricket, concentrating on ODI cricket until the World Cup,” Jayasuriya said. “I think he is the best person to judge that. He has given outstanding service to Sri Lankan cricket, and is now giving a youngster a chance to come in and play Test cricket.”