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Wednesday, 26 October 2011

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Appreciation:

DIG Mithra Siriwardena

Mithra Siriwardena who passed away on Saturday had his early education at Thurstan College. He later joined Nalanda College, Colombo. He was a man of high integrity and was a great sportsman. He was a boxer, a cricketer and a fine gentleman of high quality. It is sad to see people of his calibre passing away.

He played cricket for Nalanda in years 1956, 1957 and 1958. Mithra started as a leg spinning batsman. Later on he became a wicket-keeper and opening bat.

He opened with Sarath Silva. This duo were hard hitting and quick scoring. I vividly remember this pair, scoring almost eighty runs in twenty minutes at Campbell place against St. Peter's in 1958 under the captaincy of Mahawatte Premarathne.

I also remember playing with Mithra and he was one of the best team mates I have met in my cricketing career and in latter life. He always worked for the progress of the team. He left college in 1958 to join the Police Department where he excelled as an Officer and a cricketer for the Police Department. While he was in Colombo he represented Saracens Sports Club. From what I understand from the rest of the police officers he was a man of high integrity, an officer and a gentleman which is a rare combination in today's society. We who were his team mates certainly agree.

I will always cherish the memories of my playing cricket with him at Nalanda. I am positive the cricket teams of 1956,1957 and 1958 will appreciate his contributions to the team as well as his understanding of our lives together as friends. He cared for people irrespective of their position in life.

We will miss you Mithra.

My deepest sympathies to Mrs. Siriwardena and family.

His cremation will take place today at 3.00p.m. at the General Cemetery, Kanatte.

May he attain Nirwana!

Mahinda Athulathmudali

 

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