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Ashton Capture Sri Lankan Pro For 2016
Tuesday 26th January 2016 @ 10:53 by Mark Phillip
Ashton Sports

As last week’s Reporter went to press details were emerging from Ashton CC of the Club’s professional for 2016.

Following last years troubles, when a paper chase with Lords proved an insurmountable hurdle, it left the Reyner Lane outfit having to find substitute paid men throughout the season.

Club Officials were therefore keen to secure a signature for 2016 well in advance of the start of the Pennine League campaign.

The search eventually ended in Sri Lanka, a country which has proved to be a rich source for Ashton in previous years.

Members fondly remember the contributions of Anil Rideegammanadera and Ian Daniel a decade or so ago and despite off field issues clouding his time at Reyner Lane Naweed Ghany certainly proved himself to be an excellent player.

So it was natural that Ashton should once again look to the “Pearl of the Indian Ocean” for a paid man.

Club Vice Chair, Paul Adshead explained, “Ashton has been well served by Sri Lankans in the past, and within the limited budget we have available, we are convinced that they offer the best value.

“We spent a lot of time researching up and coming players and are delighted to announce the signing of Chamikara Edirisinghe, who we feel will really complement the players at the Club and additionally will help them to develop further”.

Edirisinghe plays his cricket for Nondescripts CC, the home base of Ridee, and also of Angi Perera, who appeared with some success as a sub pro in 2015.

He comes highly recommended by Farveez Maharoof, who was a part of the Lancashire team which won the County Championship in 2011.

Maharoof will also be operating in the Pennine League this year having recently signed for Rochdale.

Edirisinghe is a left arm spinner, and has recently had a purple patch in the domestic 1st class competition, picking up 21 wickets in the last month, including match figures of 13-105 against Sri Lanka Army SC. He added to this with a return of 6-18 in a 50 over contest with Sinhalese SC.

Newly elected captain Jack Newman is clearly excited by the addition to the Ashton squad. He told Reporter Sport, “Chamikara is obviously a quality bowler – his recent figures show that.

“Together with Brad Woolley he gives us an attack which will be a real test for any club in the PCL Championship, and one which we believe will give us the impetus we need to move on.

“Having secured a professional of his standing, we know that Ashton will be an attractive proposition for players looking for a change of scenery.

“A top order batsman is next on our list, as we look forward to the season opener against Shaw on 24th April.

“Any new players are welcome to join us at our nets, which are held each Thursday between 8.00 and 9.00 at Total Cricket in Ashton”