Shashikala Siriwardena is one of the best all-rounders that the island nation of Sri Lanka gave to the cricketing world. She is one of the flag-bearers of female cricket in her backyard. She was born in the beautiful landscapes of Colombo. She is 35 and has decided to retire from international play after T20 World Cup 2020.
Interestingly, she has earned experience of more than 15 years. In her long, yet decorated journey, she accumulated loyal fans and registered records against her name. After making her debut against West Indies in 2003, she took her career to peaks and never turned back. Her devotion to the game rewarded her with a position in the national side for T20Is after seven years of her ODI appearance.
Her glorious run with both bat and ball started when she came on the lush greens of St. Vincent. She took two wickets and scored handy 29, taking her side home with a win. The most striking fact about her career has been her performance which has seen new benchmarks irrespective of the stages of her career. A dive into her career shows that her best performances have not been limited to patches. Her best bowling figures came with 4-11 against Pakistan in 2005-06 in women’s Asia cup in Karachi. She took on Pakistan against next year with 4-34 in the next edition of women’s Asia cup.
Her rule in the cricketing arena came under no clouds as she was crowned as the top women all-rounder in 2014. She has also captained Sri Lanka for 49 matches with impressive 18 wins. She has captained the Sri Lankan women team for most matches. She has an impressive win percentage of nearly 38% as the skipper. With second-highest runs as a Sri Lankan player, she has 1554 runs in 87 matches. Apart from her batting stints, she has achieved unimaginable heights in bowling as well. She tops the list of wicket-takers for Sri Lanka in WODI.
She became first and the only cricketer in women’s one-day international to take 100 wickets. In the voyage in the shortest format of the game, she is only second to Chamari Atapattu with a total score of more than 660 in 45 matches. However, her bowling career is of no match to anyone with more than 44 wickets at an earning average of less than 20. Her captaincy in T20Is has had a win-percentage of 31%.
In 2016, she received Sri Lanka Cricket awards for the best all-rounder of the year. She, in 2017, during the world cup, became the first Sri Lankan to play 100 matches. Next year, she was chosen to represent Sri Lanka in the 2018 Women’s T20 world cup. After the tournament, she was commended as the standout player for the championship. In the last phase of her career, she is selected in the 2020 team for Sri Lanka after which she announced her retirement. Her career is no less than the personification of word glory. Her determination and courage made her inspirations for millions of ladies around the globe.
A student who enjoys studying cricket more than anything else, keen to learn the insights of the women’s game.