Deshabandu Sanath Teran Jayasuriya born 30 June 1969 is a former Sri Lankan cricketer and a former captain of the Sri Lankan national cricket team. Considered as one of the greatest ODI players of all time, Jayasuriya is well known for his powerful striking and match winning all-round performances in One Day International cricket. Jayasuriya is credited for having revolutionized One Day International cricket with his explosive batting with Romesh Kaluwitharana in 1996, which initiated the hard-hitting modern day batting strategy of all nations.
Jayasuriya was an all-rounder, who had an international cricket career that spread over two decades,He is the only player to score over 12,000 runs and capture more than 300 wickets in One Day International cricket, and hence regarded as one of the best all rounders in the history of limited-overs cricket. He was named the Most Valuable Player of 1996 Cricket World Cup and Wisden Cricketers’ Almanack broke an age old tradition by naming him one of Five Cricketers’ of the Year 1997 despite not playing the previous season in England. Jayasuriya was also the captain of the Sri Lankan cricket team from 1999 to 2003.
He retired from Test cricket in December 2007 and from limited overs cricket in June 2011. On 28 January 2013, Sri Lanka Cricketappointed him as the chairman of cricket selection committee. Sri Lanka won the ICC World Twenty20 for the first time in 2014, during his tenure as the chief selector.
Jayasuriya ran for public office at the 2010 Sri Lankan general elections and was elected to the parliament from his native Matara District. He topped the UPFA parliamentary election list for Matara district by obtaining 74,352 preferential votes. He served as the deputy minister of Postal services in the former UPFA government led by Mahinda Rajapaksa, and later as the Deputy Minister of Local Government & Rural Development under president Maithripala Sirisena. Jayasuriya did not contest for the 2015 Sri Lankan general election, though he won most votes from Matara district under UPFA in the 2010 Sri Lankan general election.
Early life and career
Sanath Jayasuriya was born in the Southern Sri Lankan city of Matara, to the family of Dunstan and Breeda Jayasuriya. He has an elder brother, Chandana Jayasuriya. He was educated at St. Servatius’ College, Matara, where his cricketing talents were nourished by his school principal, G.L. Galappathy, and cricket coach, Lionel Wagasinghe. He excelled in cricket while at St. Servatius College, Matara and captained the college cricket team at the annual St. Thomas’–St. Servatius Cricket Encounter in 1988. Jayasuriya was picked as the ‘Observer Schoolboy Cricketer of the Year’ in the Outstation Segment in 1988. He also received the awards for the ‘Best Batsman’ and ‘Best All-rounder’ in the Outstation Segment at the Observer School Cricket Awards ceremony in the same year. Jayasuriya represented Sri Lanka in the inaugural ICC Under-19 Cricket World Cup which was held in Australia in 1988 and was subsequently selected for a tour in Pakistan a few months later with the Sri Lanka ‘B’ team, where he made two unbeaten double centuries. Shortly afterwards he was drafted into the national side for the tour to Australia in 1989–90. He made his One Day International debut against Australia at Melbourne on Boxing Day of 1989 and his Test debut against New Zealand at Hamilton in February 1991.
Sanath jayasuriya’s first marriage was with Air Lanka ground hostess Sumudu Karunanayake in 1998 which lasted less then a year. Then early in the year 2000, he got married to Sandra De Silva, a former flight attendant of Sri lankan air lines. Sanath and Sandra have 3 children Savindi Jayasuriya, Yalindi Jayasuriya and Ranuka Jayasuriya. Sanath divorced from Sandra in 2012.
He is also the first cricketer to be appointed as a UN Goodwill Ambassador (by UNAIDS, Geneva) for his commitment to prevention of HIV/AIDS among young people in Sri Lanka. He entered politics in February 2010 as a candidate for Matara District. His party is the United People’s Freedom Alliance (UPFA) of president Mahinda Rajapaksa. Jayasuriya continued to play cricket after he has secured the most number of preferential votes from the Matara District by obtaining 74,352 votes.
In October 2013, he was appointed as deputy minister of Postal services in the UPFA government.
He resigned from Chief Selector post with his members on 3 April 2015.
On 10 June 2015, Jayasuriya with three other UPFA Parliamentarians took oaths from President Maithripala Sirisena as new deputy ministers. Jayasuriya was appointed as Deputy Minister of Local Government and Rural Development. He was in office until the Parliament dissolved on 26 June 2015. in the 2015 election Jayasuriya did not run for office but join the campaign of the United National Party that won the election. He was later appointed the chairman of selectors of Sri Lanka cricket.