Sri Lanka’s pace sensation Matheesha Pathirana has impressed one and all with his exploits in the ongoing Indian Premier League (IPL) season.
Playing for Chennai Super Kings (CSK), Pathirana has claimed 17 wickets in 11 matches at an economy rate of 7.72.
Pathirana’s performance has been one of the key factors behind CSK’s stellar run in IPL 2023. The MS Dhoni-led side finished the league stage at the second spot before beating table-toppers Gujarat Titans in Qualifier 1 to book a spot for the final.
During the season, Matheesha Pathirana earned accolades from Dhoni on a number of occasions for his brilliant bowling.
Ahead of the final, the Sri Lankan cricketer’s family got the chance to meet the CSK captain. After interacting with Dhoni, Pathirana’s sister Vishuka was over the moon and she shared some pictures on Instagram.
“Now we are sure that malli is in safe hands when Thala said, ‘You have nothing to worry about Matheesha, he’s always with me’. These moments were even beyond what I had ever dreamt of,” Vishuka wrote in the caption.
Earlier this month, MS Dhoni advised Pathirana to stay away from Test cricket and stick to the white-ball format if he wants to have a great future.
Dhoni’s suggestion came keeping in mind the bowler’s sling-shot action, which could lead to injuries.
“People who don't have very clean (conventional) action, batsmen have a difficult time picking it and when trying to go after the bowler. But his consistency, variation, pace makes him special. What's important is to keep an eye on how much cricket he is playing. I feel he should not play red-ball cricket, not even get close to it, even play only ICC tournaments with ODIs and keep the rest as less as possible, because he's not someone who'll change a lot,” Dhoni said after Pathirana scripted CSK’s victory over MI by taking three wickets on May 6.
“This is what he'll do. So you can always use him at crucial times. But make sure he's fit and available for all the ICC tournaments and he'll be a great asset for Sri Lanka. Not to forget, he's a really young boy. Last time he came, he was very lean but has put on muscle and is stronger. I feel he'll serve for a long time in Sri Lankan cricket but he'll have to keep an eye on how much he bowls," he added.