Tillakratne-Maharoof Flop Show Continue as Kandy Tuskers Crashes Out of LPL

Written by N Krishnamurthy

Another reunion. Another disaster. As it was widely expected, after seeing the names of outdated Hashan Tillakratne (as head coach) and manipulative Farveez Maharoof (as team manager) in the setup, Kandy Tuskers performed poorly in the ongoing Lanka Premier League (LPL) and eventually crashed out of the league on Thursday, following another lacklustre show against Galle Gladiators in a do or die match.

It was an embarrassing show, from a team which had some of the top most players of the league, both Sri Lankan and overseas. The high-profile team had Kusal Perera and Kusal Mendis, two of the most consistent match winners for Sri Lanka in limited overs cricket, at the top of the order. In addition, Overseas players like Irfan Pathan, Munaf Patel were also drafted to strengthen the playing XI.

Result, however, was below par. The curse of Tillakratne-Maharoof duo continued, as team failed miserably to make an impact.

There are plenty of blunders, which contributed in a flop show for Kandy Tuskers, such as:

Reunion of TillakratneMaharoof

It was a recipe for disaster! Everyone in Sri Lanka knows how these two ruined U19 team’s World Cup chances earlier this year, with biased selection, favoritism in giving chances to players and some horrible tactical decisions! Sadly, the owners of Kandy Tuskers were unaware of this!

Hashan Tillakratne, a World Cup winning member, relies on his so called political influence for blossoming his coaching career. Unfortunately, political backing can’t win trophies! He was a gutsy player, with lot of character. However, someone need to tell him that he doesn’t belong to coaching! In every given (or forcefully taken) opportunity at every level so far, he has performed poorly. In Kandy Tuskers, he had one of the most balanced team – with a perfect mixture of young blood and experience. He could not utilize both. Lack of Modern thinking was quite visible in his coaching, as Kandy Tuskers disappointed everyone with lukewarm performance. In the end, poor selection of the squad, continues persistent with non performers like Seekuge Prasanna, Dilruwan Perera proved fatal for Kandy Tuskers.

Farveez Maharoof, meanwhile, was brought himself into the team as manager by making a false promise of bringing Jet (he is marketing manager there) on board as team owners. At the end, they associated only as sponsor. It could also happen only after few matches, but it exposed again how Maharoof gets opportunities. He has fast become notorious for using external things for his appointments, instead of trusting on his ability! A complete failure in every responsibility, it’s itself a mystery of Sri Lanka cricket that – how he gets chances at first place!

In the end, after yesterday’s game, Upul Chandana had the last laugh as Galle Gladiators assistant coach, seeing Hashan and Maharoof, who both undercut him during the U19 World Cup, knocking out of the league in embarrassing fashion.

No trust on Young players

Kandy Tuskers was blessed with some of the brightest young players of Sri Lanka – Lasith Embuldeniya,
Kevin Koththigoda, Kamindu Mendis, Priyamal Perera. Hashan Tillakratne could not utilize anyone properly. As a result, all they could learn just one thing – how to warm benches during a long tournament!

Trust on Old Guns

Seekuge Prasanna has passed his prime long time ago! Irfan Pathan and Munaf Patel? Seriously? They should be termed as senior citizen in today’s cricket! Asela Gunaratne proves just one match wonder.

But, Hashan and Maharoof were so clueless, that they could not sense the liability of these aging players. In the end, they proved just show pieces!

Kusal Perera as captain

Now, this is a big joke! Kusal Perera as captain is the guarantee of demise for any team! One of the most explosive batsman of modern era! But a pathetic captain at any level. The only person, who can recommend him as captain – is his over-active (and over- dominant) manager Ravi De Silva! In the end, this extra burden punctured his batting prowess as well! He turned out the worst, least inspiring captain among all LPL teams!

High Profile Overseas Withdrawn

Chris Gayle, Liam Plunkett, Wahab Riaz! All these are World class players and could have been game changers for Kandy Tuskers. Unfortunately, all they withdrew, due to different reasons. It harmed Kandy Tuskers chances big time! Dale Styen finally arrived, but for just one match. In the end, it benefited only him, not the Kandy Tuskers.

It’s just the first season of the LPL! The Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) could be given ‘perfect 10’ for organising such a competitive league!

However, as for as Kandy Tuskers, it turned a forgettable beginning. However, in the first edition itself, it provided some clarity for the owner, like – Tillakratne is not a coach to persist with, Maharoof need to be given a farewell and Kusal Perera is not a captain material!

About the author

N Krishnamurthy