Kusal Perera

Sri Lanka

Personal Information
Born
Aug 17, 1990 (30 years)
Birth Place
Kalubowila
Height
Role
WK-Batsman
Batting Style
Left Handed Bat
ICC Rankings
                             Test      ODI      T20
Batting                57           51         28
Bowling               —            —          —
Career Information
Teams
Sri Lanka, Wayamba United, Sri Lanka A, Ruhuna Reds, Rajasthan Royals, Southern Express, Sri Lanka Board Presidents XI, Rangpur Riders, Kandy, Delhi Bulls, Cumilla Warriors, Kandy Tuskers
Fearless, audacious and turbo-aggressive, Kusal Janith Perera is a firecracker in the Sri Lankan batting unit. Sanath Jayasuriya’s career experienced a U-turn when he was elevated to the top…
Full profile
Batting Career Summary
MInnNORunsHSAvgBFSR100200504s6s
Test22413117715330.97162972.2520715112
ODI101964282513530.71305092.62501431149
T20I4646012938428.11956135.25001212347
IPL22014147.013107.6900030
Bowling Career Summary
MInnBRunsWktsBBIBBMEconAvgSR5W10W
Test22
ODI101
T20I46
IPL2
Career Information
Test debut
vs India at Sinhalese Sports Club, Aug 28, 2015
Last Test
vs England at Galle International Stadium, Jan 22, 2021
ODI debut
vs Australia at Adelaide Oval, Jan 13, 2013
Last ODI
vs West Indies at Pallekele International Cricket Stadium, Mar 01, 2020
T20 debut
vs Australia at Stadium Australia, Jan 26, 2013
Last T20
vs West Indies at Pallekele International Cricket Stadium, Mar 06, 2020
IPL debut
vs Delhi Capitals at Arun Jaitley Stadium, Apr 06, 2013
Last IPL
vs Pune Warriors at Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium, Apr 11, 2013
Profile
Fearless, audacious and turbo-aggressive, Kusal Janith Perera is a firecracker in the Sri Lankan batting unit. Sanath Jayasuriya’s career experienced a U-turn when he was elevated to the top of the order, launching flying starts. Kusal, who also began as a middle-order batsman, seems to have taken a leaf out of his predecessor’s book.

Perera was a regular in the Sri Lankan Under-19 teams since 2007. He, then, debuted for the Colts Cricket Club in 2009. The dashing young batsman etched his name in the Sri Lankan cricket folklore when he slammed 336 from just 275 deliveries for the Colts against Saracens at Havelock Park, Colombo. The hurricane knock, featuring 14 maximums and 29 hits to the fence, is the only triple century in the history of the domestic competition.

His short-arm jabs, pick-up hits and square cuts provoked inevitable comparisons with Jayasuriya. Much like Jayasuriya, Kusal is known to have a penchant for big runs. He carried on, scoring prolifically at the domestic circuit to bang hard on the national selectors’ doors. Kusal is a handy wicket-keeper as well.

An injury to Kumar Sangakkara paved way for Perera’s ODI debut in Jaunuary 2013 in Adelaide. He batted at Number 4, scoring an unbeaten 14 in a charming little cameo, seeing Sri Lanka past the finish line along with centurion, Thirimanne.

Identifying the spirit of adventure in his batsmanship, the Sri Lankan think-tank bumped him up to the top of the order in the short T20I series that followed the ODIs. Needless to say, the southpaw’s pyrotechnics gave the Emerald Islanders the edge.

More success was to follow, this time in the Indian subcontinent, where Rajasthan Royals netted his services for 2013 Indian T20 League, although he was relegated to the sidelines for the bulk of the tourney.

Joining hands with Tillakaratne Dilshan, Perera has provided brief glimpses of tearing open the portal to the 1996 Jayasuriya-Kaluwitharana era. Having enjoyed a successful 2014-15 season in ODIs, Perera earned his maiden call-up for Tests in July-August 2015 against india. He compiled half-centuries in both innings on his debut and became only the second Sri Lankan to do so.

Tragedy struck late in 2015 with a failed dope test, where his urine sample tested positive for a banned substance – forcing the SLC to pull him out of all future tours. His future looked in dismay when he tested positive for a performance enhancing drug, 19-Norandrostenedione in both his ‘A’ and ‘B’ samples. However with his board backing him to the hilt, he underwent ploygraphic tests to prove his innocence and came out with success. Not before losing nearly seven months of cricket.

His performances on his comeback remain just as erratic and inconsistent, but it is the potential he threatens to unleash that keeps him in the side on most occasions in all formats. Not for no reason does he boast of the record for the highest strike rate of 272 in an innings of over 50 runs – one where he overtook his lookalike and idol, Sanath Jayasuriya.

World Cup through the years
Not part of the initial 2015 World Cup squad, he was a late draft in for the injured Dimuth Karunaratne midway through the tournament. With opportunities in only a couple of matches – a quickfire 24 in the first batting in the middle-order and a failure opening in the innings in the second – he just didn’t have the time to leave an impact as Sri Lanka crashed out in the quarter-finals. Now, with perhaps the best Test innings by a Sri Lankan batsman behind him earlier in the season, he comes into the 2019 World Cup with a senior batsman on whom the rather inexperienced side is going to rely heavily for good starts.