Fore­run­ner to the Pro­vin­cial Tourney is un­der way

Sunday Times (Sri Lanka) - - COMMENT - By Lak­sh­man Ranas­inghe

The Un­der ( U)- 15 In­ter- Dis­trict Cricket Tour­na­ment 2017 or­gan­ised and con­ducted by Sri Lanka Cricket ( SLC) is un­der way. It will be fol­lowed by the all im­por­tant Prima In­ter- Pro­vin­cial com­pe­ti­tion for the Prima Cham­pi­ons Cup 2017. Prima Group Sri Lanka will spon­sor the 2 tour­na­ments for the 11th suc­ces­sive year. The Dis­trict com­pe­ti­tion had over 600 play­ers from 39 teams is­land­wide par­tic­i­pat­ing. The best play­ers from these Dis­tricts will be se­lected for the 12 Pro­vin­cial teams, for the Pro­vin­cial Cham­pi­onship. It is note­wor­thy that 5 teams from the North­ern Prov­ince will rep­re­sent Jaffna, Man­nar, Vavu­niya, Mul­laitiv and Kilinochchi Dis­tricts. The per­for­mances of the out­sta­tion crick­eters will be closely mon­i­tored, as this is a fine op­por­tu­nity to un­earth hid­den tal­ent and bring them un­der the wings of qual­i­fied coaches for the ben­e­fit of Sri Lanka cricket's fu­ture .

The pre­lim­i­nary matches of the Pro­vin­cial Tour­na­ment will be played on mat­ting wick­ets, while the fi­nal will be played on the SSC turf, on Sept.14.

With the SLC vi­sion that to­day's crick­eters of this level will be to­mor­row's na­tional crick­eters, or­gan­is­ing com­pet­i­tive cricket at age group lev- els will show­case tal­ent is­land­wide. U-15 cricket is the launch pad for a young crick­eter. Cricket at pro­vin­cial level is the cor­rect step taken by the SLC to im­prove the stan­dard of cricket in the is­land, start­ing with the Prima U-15 tour­na­ment.

At the press brief­ing held on the spon­sor­ship pre­sen­ta­tion at SLC head­quar­ters, SLC Vice Pres­i­dent M. Mathivanan, while thank­ing Prima for their con­tin­u­ous spon­sor­ship, ex­tolled the val­ues of In­ter Pro­vin­cial cricket, which he said is a strong foun­da­tion at ju­nior level that will guide the bud­ding crick­eters into the in­ter­na­tional arena, ma­tured and ready.

The Vice Pres­i­dent went on to say that present na­tional crick­eters in the cal­i­bre of An­jelo Mat­tews, Kusal Mendis, Dhanan­jaya de Silva, Niroshan Dik­wella and Binura Fer­nando have par­tic­i­pated in the Prima Cup, along with Anuk Fer­nando, Sadeera Sa­ma­rawick­rema and Priya­mal Per­era who rep­re­sented the U-19 team.

BER­GEN, Nor­way, Sept 16, 2017 (AFP) - Chris Froome will spear­head the Sky team at the World Cham­pi­onships in Nor­way as the Tour de France cham­pion aims for a sec­ond dou­ble of his stun­ning 2017 sea­son.

The 32- year- old is al­ready en­joy­ing the great­est year of his ca­reer hav­ing claimed a Tour de France and Vuelta a Es­pana dou­ble for the first time.

And now he will aim to add to that a pair of time- trial vic­to­ries in Ber­gen as he com­petes for Great Bri­tain on Wed­nes­day in the in­di­vid­ual time- trial, just three days af­ter rep­re­sent­ing Sky in the team time-trial along­side for­mer road race wo rl d cham­pion Mich a l Kwiatkowski and Com­mon­wealth Games cham­pion Geraint Thomas.

Froome's in­sa­tiable ap­petite for suc­cess was ev­i­dent on the fi­nal stage of the Vuelta less than a week ago as, al­ready

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