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Mihintalava - The Birthplace of Sri Lankan Buddhist Civilization

The scorer's story

As I look back the last 20 years or so, everything has changed. Unbelievably cricket has just become a tele-drama and we have become the key figures in it, amidst a lot of commercials.

Scoring in the 25th Test match played at CCC grounds in 1987, I stepped into the press box for the first time and saw Brendon Kuruppu score a glorious double century on debut. It was a privilege to 'pen' brilliant 60 runs scored by Ranjan Madugalle, which I can easily recall even today.

All hearts in Sri Lanka stopped for a minute and so did mine in 1997 when Sanath Jayasuriya was out for 340 runs in the first Test against India at the R. Premadasa Stadium.

I'll never forget penning the World Record score of 952 for 6 in that Test. It was an agonizing experience for me to mark 952 runs on a tiny score sheet.

Jayasuriya and Roshan Mahanama kept my hand working overtime and in pain, as I had to drag the pen all around the scorebook. Yet it was a sweet memory and I have retold this story as a humble boast to many of my colleagues and friends.

From 25th to 150th Test, I have seen an unaccountable number of centuries and half centuries, apart from a number of double hundreds. However, the way Muttiah Muralitharan saluted the crowd twice for his half century in a Test against India in Kandy, is still vivid in my mind. It was such a wonderful innings and we had a lot of fun during the innings.

With tears in my eyes I must record that dear Sandun Prematillake (of 'Kreeda' fame) is no longer with us. He was run out and he will never return to press box again.

As the sky turns red by 4.00 pm in the evening, the entire press box is filled with typing noises of tak... tak... taka... takas. and so on. But now, those typewriters are not to be seen any more and lap top computers are acquiring its place. Today's communication gimmicks force me to wipe my eyes to realize that I am not dreaming.

There has been lot of fun and joyful moments in the press box, for many of which I was responsible.

It was pleasing to think that my contribution to Sri Lanka cricket is recognized as the authorities have approved the two scorebooks designed by me for first-class and one-day cricket.

Last but not least, I shall never forget two of my senior scorers, Claude de Silva and Sujith Cooray. I am here today because of them.



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