The name Janith Liyanage is storming on various social media platforms and has grabbed the headlines section. He received his maiden ODI cap from the Sri Lankan Cricket team on 6th January 2024 (Friday) during the 3-match series against Zimbabwe- the visitors.
However, the cricketer couldn’t make an impressive score in the 1st ODI match. Later, the match was interrupted frequently and got canceled due to severe rains.
Recently, the 28-year-old right-handed batsman played a masterclass run-chase innings. He scored 95 runs from 127 balls ( including 6 fours and 2 sixes). His crucial knock contributed to a major winning cause for Sri Lanka that discharged him to out-of-ordinary fame.
However, Janith Liyanage fell 5-runs short of achieving his maiden international century.
Chasing a target of 209 runs in 50 overs, Sri Lanka stumbled with a score of 112-6 in 30.5 overs.
But Janith Liyanage maintained a 56-run partnership with Maheesh Theekshana during the 2nd ODI match.
As a result, Sri Lanka won by 2 wickets under tricky conditions with an over to spare.
Before knowing the remarkable achievements, it would be intriguing to know who is Janith Liyanage and his biography in detail. How did he start his journey from domestic to international cricket?
Kongala Liyanage Janith Vimukthi was born on 12th July 1995 in Colombo, Sri Lanka. He completed his education at St. Peter’s College, though his education details provided are limited.
Currently, he is still single and unmarried. Janith Liayanage’s father is a businessman who runs a small food stall. Whereas, his mother is a housewife.
Recently, his elder sister Nimanka showered praises on Janith’s achievement on his maiden “Player of the Match” award.
Neither details about his religion nor his parents’ name were revealed officially.
On 16th January 2015, Janith Liyanage marked his debut in the Premier Trophy for Ragama Cricket Club 2014-15.
In March 2018, he secured his position in the Galle squad for the Super Provincial One Day Tournament 2017-18.
Following the players’ draft for the Lanka Premier League in 2021, he represented Dambulla Giants in November 2021.
Later, selectors roped Janith Liyanage for the 5-match T20I series against Australia in February 2022.
Janith wasn’t able to make a huge impact on his international debut match played on 20th February 2022. He was able to score only 8 runs in the final T20I match of the series. Nevertheless, Sri Lanka as visitors avoided facing a complete whitewash by winning the match by 5 wickets, thereby concluding the series by 1-4.
In July 2022, the Kandy Falcons acquired him for the third edition of the Lanka Premier League.
On 6th January 2024, Janith Liyanage made his ODI debut at R. Premadasa Stadium, Colombo. He scored only 24 runs from 34 balls (including a four) in his first ODI match.
But, it was on 8th January 2024 when Janith created a sensation against Zimbabwe in the 2nd ODI match of the series.
Finally, Sri Lanka won the 3-match ODI series against Zimbabwe with 2-0. Interestingly, Janith Liyanage achieved his first “Player of the Series” award in his ODI debut on the Zimbabwe tour of Sri Lanka in 2024.
While Janith was successful in his ODI debut, still he needs to prove his best abilities in T20 international cricket.
Janith Liyanage played only 3 T20Is in his career. His last participation in the shorter format was against India on 27th February 2022 at HPCA stadium, Dharamshala ( Himachal Pradesh).
Out of 3 matches, Janith scored only 28 runs with his highest score of 11 runs against India, while chasing a target of 200 runs on 24th February 2022 at Lucknow.
Conversely his performance in T20Is, Janith played only 3 ODI cricket matches and scored 119 runs in 2 innings. It includes his highest score of 95 runs in a crucial run chase against Zimbabwe.
Moreover, as a medium pacer, he grabbed his first wicket in the form of Zimbabwe’s all-rounder- Ryan Burl, during the 3rd and final ODI match of the series.
Additionally, he succeeded in recording his best bowling figures of 1-17 in 3 overs of an ODI innings.
With lots of upcoming series and tournaments in his career, Janith Liyanage is expected to create new records in the One Day Internationals (ODIs).
Janith Liyanage is yet to make his test debut, following his recent success in the ODI format.
The young Sri Lankan cricketer clarified that he focussed more on his team to win rather than achieving his maiden ODI century.
Janith Liyanage missed his century while attempting to hit a six when he was 95.
He expressed that his team was 5 runs short of the DLS score. Janith calculated that attempting to smash a six, not only would allow him to reach his first international century but also enable his team to surpass the DLS score, even if the rain threatened to play a spoilsport in the game.
Since Maheesh Theekshana contributed only 18 runs in the partnership, Janith Liyanage had to play more aggressively when compared to his previous innings. At the same time, he ensured to choose his targets carefully.
As the rain started, Sri Lanka lost 2 quick wickets. The ball started to move favorably for fast bowlers. Initially, in a tricky condition, Janith decided to defend and planned to execute his shots only after becoming completely set. Finally, Janith Liyanage was glad that his team was able to reach the winning total with his crucial contribution