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Tillakaratne Dilshan to retire after Australia series

August 25, 2016 16:29 IST
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IMAGE: Tillakaratne Dilshan of Sri Lanka celebrates his century. Photograph: Mark Kolbe/Getty Images.

Sri Lanka's senior opening batsman Tillakaratne Dilshan is set to retire from international cricket at the end of Australia's Tour of Sri Lanka. 

Dilshan missed Sri Lanka's previous limited-overs series against England for personal reasons, but returned to the side that is currently deadlocked 1 1 with Australia after two matches in Colombo.

The third ODI, on Sunday August 28 in Dambulla, will be Dilshan's farewell to the 50-over game and Sri Lanka Cricket are hurriedly making arrangements to honour his enormous contribution to the game.

Dilshan will not be part of the last two ODIs, which will be played in Dambulla and Kandy respectively.

The opener will however return for the final time to play the two-match T20 series.

His final match will be the T20 international against Australia in Colombo on September 9.

The 39-year-old right-handed opener burst onto the scene for Sri Lanka in 1999, and has played 329 one-day matches for his country, scoring 10,248 runs at 39.26.

He has hit 22 centuries, including a career best 161 not out in Sri Lanka's World Cup pool match against Bangladesh at the MCG in February 2015.

IMAGE: Dilshan attempts the 'Dilscoop'. Photograph: Gareth Copley/Getty Images.

Dilshan is credited to introduce the the innovative 'Dilscoop', a fearless, ducking ramp shot played over the wicketkeeper’s head.

A handy spinner, Dilshan also has 106 ODI wickets, and is one of just five players to have scored a century in all three forms of the game.

Dilshan was reportedly under significant pressure from Sri Lanka's selectors to stand aside and allow the team to build towards the 2019 World Cup.

The veteran's performances had demanded his inclusion in the Sri Lanka XI in recent years; 2015 was his most successful year in one-day cricket, scoring 1,207 runs, and he has averaged 49.18 in ODIs since 2013.

He was also the nation's top scorer in this year's World T20 campaign.

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