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Vaas Replaces ‘Suspended’ Gunawardene as Sri Lanka Emerging Team Coach

Former Sri Lanka paceman Chaminda Vaas, who was serving as the bowling coach of the Under-19 team, has been elevated to the post of ‘Emerging Team’ coach for the tour of South Africa next month. The left-arm seamer will replace Avishka Gunawardene, who has been suspended by the International Cricket Council (ICC) and Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) for breaking Emirates Cricket Board’s Anti-Corruption Code.

Cricketnext Staff |May 14, 2019, 7:46 PM IST
Vaas Replaces ‘Suspended’ Gunawardene as Sri Lanka Emerging Team Coach

Former Sri Lanka paceman Chaminda Vaas, who was serving as the bowling coach of the Under-19 team, has been elevated to the post of ‘Emerging Team’ coach for the tour of South Africa next month. The left-arm seamer will replace Avishka Gunawardene, who has been suspended by the International Cricket Council (ICC) and Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) for breaking Emirates Cricket Board’s Anti-Corruption Code.

Vaas is the leading wicket-taker among fast bowlers from Sri Lanka with 355 wickets in 111 Tests and 400 scalps in 322 ODIs. However, the 45-year-old was a handy batsman as well with a Test century to his name and an average of 24.32 in Test cricket.

“Chaminda Vaas was appointed as the Head Coach of the Sri Lanka ‘Emerging Team’ for the forthcoming Tour of South Africa,” SLC announced in a statement.

Vaas has vast amount of coaching experience, having started a bowling coach of the national team from 2013 Champions Trophy to April 2015. He then joined Ireland as their bowling coach for a brief stint before being re-hired by SLC in August 2016 as fast bowling consultant. In July 2017, he once again became national team’s bowling coach replacing Champaka Ramanayake.

Gunawardene, meanwhile, has denied all charges of corruption when he addressed the media at the Sinhalese Sports Club (SSC) in Colombo with lawyer Chrishmal Warnaasuriya on Monday.

Along with fellow former Sri Lanka cricketer Nuwan Zoysa, Gunawardene was also charged with Article 2.4.5 – Failing to disclose to the ACU (without unnecessary delay) full details of any incident, fact, or matter that comes to the attention of a participant that may evidence Corrupt Conduct under the Anti-Corruption Code by another participant.

“Gunawardene has also been provisionally suspended under the ECB Code pending the determination of these charges. Zoysa and Mr Gunawardene have 14 days from 9 May 2019 to respond to the charges. The ICC will not make any further comment in respect of these charges at this stage,” ICC release stated.​

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