There have been many instances of cricketers joining the army, or already having joined the army, played cricket at the highest level. There have been examples like Hedley Verity, the England spinner, who picked 144 Test wickets in 40 matches and died in action during the Second World War in Italy during the invasion of Sicily.
Modern-day examples having been MS Dhoni and Kapil Dev, who hold honorary military ranks, with Dhoni serving with the armed forces as well. West Indian fast bowler Sheldon Cottrell’s salute celebration is in tribute to the Jamaican Defence Forces, of which he is a member of. Even Sir Don Bradman had joined the Australian Air Force in 1940. Now Sri Lanka’s Thisara Perera joins the club of cricketers joining the army.
Perera announces joining the army on invitation from Army Commander
Thisara Perera, the star Lankan all-rounder announced on Twitter that he was joining the army on invitation from Army Commander Lieutenant general Shavendra Silva. He called it the biggest achievement of his life and will now play for Army Cricket Club. Perera tweeted, “I accepted the invitation of Army Commander Lieutenant general Shavendra Silva in the first place & joined the Army. Getting an invitation from someone like him was one of the biggest achievements of my life. Thank you, Sir! I look forward to contributing my best to Army Cricket.”
I accepted the invitation of Army Commander Lieutenant general Shavendra Silva in the first place & joined the Army.Getting an invitation from someone like him was one of the biggest achievements of my life. Thank you Sir! I look forward to contributing my best to Army Cricket. pic.twitter.com/yfTFHANE1O
— Thisara perera (@PereraThisara) December 30, 2019
Meanwhile, Sri Lankan journalist Azzam Ameen also revealed that Perera joined the Sri Lanka Army Volunteer Force as a Commissioned officer and will play for the army cricket club, something similar to former captain Dinesh Chandimal, who too joined the army in the same position in September.
Thisara Perera joins Sri Lanka Army Volunteer Force as a Commissioned Officer to play Cricket similar to Dinesh Chandimal. Thisara Perera made his debut for Army Cricket Club today 🇱🇰🏏 pic.twitter.com/n5Sh5u7weh
— Azzam Ameen (@AzzamAmeen) December 29, 2019
The 30-year-old all-rounder from Colombo has played 161 ODIs, 79 T20Is and 6 Tests for the Islanders scoring 2210, 1169 and 203 runs respectively. He has also picked 171, 51 and 11 wickets respectively in all the three formats as well. He has made a name for himself as a T20 mercenary, scoring 3328 runs and picking 232 wickets in 269 T20 games all over the world. He has appeared in all the major T20 leagues like IPL, BBL, PSL, BPL and many more, as well as appearances in the T10 league.
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