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Nuwan Kulasekara bids farewell to international cricket
Sri Lanka News

Nuwan Kulasekara bids farewell to international cricket

Sri Lanka paceman Nuwan Kulasekara has called time on his international career with immediate effect, local media reports declared on Wednesday.

A canny customer with the ball, Kulasekara ends his career as Sri Lanka's third-highest wicket-taker among pacers in ODI cricket, behind Chaminda Vaas and Lasith Malinga in the distinguished list.

Kulasekara's abrupt decision comes days after Malinga said he will be retiring from the 50-over format following the first ODI against Bangladesh on Friday.

Kulasekara last made an international appearance during Sri Lanka's loss to Zimbabwe in 2017 at Hambantota.

The veteran seamer, who recently turned 37, had taken a hiatus from competitive cricket since he has not featured in domestic cricket since March 2018.

An effective new ball bowler who relied on his nippy swing to challenge batsmen, Kulasekara often formed a destructive bowling partnership with fellow teammate Malinga.

He also enjoyed great success in T20Is, finishing as Sri Lanka's joint second-leading wicket-taker in the format alongside Ajantha Mendis with 66 wickets in 58 games.

Despite his natural capability to swing the ball both ways, Kulasekara struggled to become a constant feature in Sri Lanka's Test set-up and played the last of his 21 five-day games in 2014 against England at Lord's.

Kulasekara's skillset also included pinpoint yorkers with the old ball - an attribute which came in handy during his team's victorious 2014 World T20 campaign.

Maintaining tight lines and lengths, he picked up eight wickets in six matches at a splendid economy rate of 6.42 in the tournament and helped Sri Lanka tame India in the final with a quality bowling spell of 1 for 29 in four overs.

Kulasekara represented Sri Lanka in three World Cups, managing to play two back-to-back finals in 2007 and 2011 for his team.

He claimed a single five-wicket haul through the course of his ODI career in the game against Australia in Brisbane in 2013.

Spearheading the Sri Lankan bowling attack on numerous occasions, Kulasekara also occupied the top spot in the ICC ODI rankings for bowlers for several months in 2009 when he was at the peak of his abilities.