Chaos Threatens To Engulf SL Again

The possible departure of Paul Farbrace will cause fresh tumult for Sri Lanka, just two weeks after their World T20 win sparked scenes of jubilation.

For almost 18 years, there was hardly a better time to be a Sri Lanka cricket fan than the past two weeks. The WT20 party hurtled seamlessly into the Sinhala and Tamil New Year in one uninterrupted sequence of exploding firecrackers, and the nation drew deep from the taste and noise of success. But two weeks is all you get. As the head coach contemplates jumping ship, euphoria has begun to dissolve with the onset of monsoon rains, leaving behind hardier features of the Sri Lanka fan's existence: frustration and uncertainty.

The full story behind Paul Ferbrace's potential departure is not yet clear but, while he had been well-regarded within the team, unconfirmed tales of discontent with SLC have already begun to emerge. Before taking the job, Farbrace had spoken of an "affinity" for Sri Lanka and its players since his time as the team's assistant coach from 2007 to 2009, and perhaps he will have known that to thrive in Sri Lanka, an affinity for chaos is also required. Chaos is what he got when Sri Lanka set out to the World T20 with central contracts unsigned, only to win the tournament, before senior players publically slammed board officials minutes after the team had landed.

That Farbrace will have been offered a bigger salary by the ECB is almost certain, and even if SLC was not crippled by debt, it could hardly hope to match the England board's financial might. Sri Lanka's cricketers play unpaid for months because they feel it is their duty but a foreigner is not bound by such virtue. SLC has also confirmed Farbrace is on a six-month probationary period, which may mean Farbrace can walk out of his contract with few repercussions, though SLC secretary Nishantha Ranatunga said on Sunday that the exact legal consequences have not yet been worked out.


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