Captain gets heat stroke as Sri Lanka resume training


Sri Lanka captain Dimuth Karunaratne gets medical attention after suffering a heat stroke during training yesterday at Colombo Cricket Club grounds. Picture by Viraj Kothalawala of The Papare.

By Rex Clementine  

Mickey Arthur’s coaching methods aren’t for the faint hearted. Who else would drop of all people Shane Watson from a Test match for not doing his homework? Yesterday as Sri Lanka’s players went outdoors to do fitness sessions at Colombo Cricket Club grounds, more than a few of them struggled and skipper Dimuth Karunaratne needed to be treated for a heat stroke.

"It was a bit of a struggle as we were doing running sessions after some times.  Muscles were not probably ready. My eating habits and training during lock down were just fine but I couldn’t manage it as we started fitness sessions this morning. I got a heat stroke," Karunaratne told The Island after the training session.

"We were doing 180 meter sprints. We had to do 36 of them and after doing about eight, the heat got to me. I was having blurring vision and the pulses were perhaps down as well. Doctor and the medical staff were called up and I was put in an ac room," Karunaratne explained. 

"We will catch up as we move on. Two guys pulled muscles and others had muscle pains. Mickey’s idea of doing this stuff well in advance sounds sensible. If you just happen to go flat out before a series and you get injured, you don’t have time to recover.

Sri Lanka Head Coach Mickey Arthur and Batting Coach Grant Flower wash their hands before a training session yesterday at Colombo Cricket Club grounds. Picture Credit Ishara S.  Kodikara. 

Karunaratne is the only outsider in a two week residential camp meant for bowlers and injured players. "I was supposed to join training with the second batch of players. But Mickey felt that with me around, we can plan a few things."

After a flat out fitness session, the bowlers sent down four overs each and their work out looked mild. "The bowlers were supposed to get the rhythm right and get their shoulders going. They were coming off short runs up and sent down only four overs. They were at 50% today. They will be at 60% tomorrow and then we will go high intensity from next week."

With series against England and South Africa postponed due to the outbreak of COVID 19 pandemic, Karunaratne is hopeful the scheduled series against India will go ahead.  "Fingers crossed, the India series will go ahead. If it gets postponed, then we hope we play Bangladesh in July."

The 13 players who are training are putting up at Shangri La in Colombo.  The next set of players are expected to start training in two weeks time.


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