Road Safety World Series T20 2020-21: Player of the Series
Tillakaratne Dilshan starred with both bat and ball for Sri Lanka Legends in the Road Safety World Series T20 2020-21 and guided his team to the final, where they were beaten by India Legends.
Sri Lanka legends did have a good team in the competition including the likes of Sanath Jayasuriya, Upul Tharanga, Russel Arnold, Nuwan Kulasekara and Rangana herath. But, when you compare that to Virender Sehwag, Sachin Tendulkar, Yuvraj Singh, Yusuf Pathan, Irfan Pathan, Mohammad Kaif and Pragyan Ojha the Indian Legends certainly seem a much seasoned side on paper.
The fact that Sri Lanka legends not only advanced to the final after finishing the league stage with 20 points, same as that of India legends, with 5 wins and one loss from 6 matches but also gave Indian legends a run for their money in the final is commendable.
If not for some tight bowling from the Pathan brothers, the way Sri Lanka legends were going, they could have well gone on to win the title but ultimately fell short by just 14 runs.
All throughout the competition, one man took centre stage for Sri Lanka legends. It was skipper Tillakaratne Dilshan who opened both the batting and bowling for Sri Lanka and did equally well in both the department’s.
The captain finished as the highest run scorer not only for Sri Lanka legends but in the entire competition with 271 runs from 8 matches at an average of 45.16 and a strike rate 136.86. He scored two half centuries in the competition, with the best of 61 not out and ensured that Sri Lanka legends put up a solid display with the bat more often than not.
With the ball in hand, he was equally impactful and finished as the top wicket taker, again not only for Sri Lanka legends but in the entire competition with 12 wickets from 8 matches at an average of 13.58, an economy rate of 6.39 and a strike rate of 12.7. He conceded 163 runs while bowling 25.3 overs in the competition and had the best of 4/6.
After having a look at these numbers, it leaves little room for even considering any other player for the Player of the Series award and hence, he deservedly pocketed it. There is no shame in losing to a better opponent and one should take nothing away from SL’s efforts in the competition, particularly that of their skipper Tillakaratne Dilshan.