The first edition of the Lanka Premier League [ LPL 2020 ] starts on Thursday, November 26, featuring five teams: Colombo Kings, Dambulla Viiking, Galle Gladiators, Jaffna Stallions and Kandy Tuskers – here’s the head coach list for the tournament.
The LPL 2020’s commencement follows weeks of uncertainty which saw a host of overseas stars pull out at the last minute, as franchises hurriedly named replacements.
There’s been so much confusion surrounding the tournament that Herschelle Gibbs and Russell Arnold arrived in Sri Lanka unsure of what they were supposed to do. While Gibbs was eventually roped in as Colombo Kings’ head coach, Arnold joined the commentary panel.
— Russel Arnold (@RusselArnold69) November 18, 2020
The tournament, in its entirety, will be played at the Sooriyawewa Stadium, Hambantota from November 26 to December 16.
Kandy Tuskers LPL 2020 head coach: Hashan Tillakaratne
Part of the 1996 World Cup-winning Sri Lanka squad, Tillakaratne played 83 Tests, the tenth most by a Sri Lankan, scoring 4,545 runs. He also captained the national side in 11 Tests. The former wicketkeeper-batsman has an experienced pool of overseas players in Dale Steyn, Irfan Pathan and Munaf Patel, with Dilruwan Perera, Kusal Perera and Kusal Mendis leading the list of local players.
Colombo Kings LPL 2020 head coach: Herschelle Gibbs
Gibbs was reportedly handed the responsibility to coach Colombo Kings for LPL 2020 only after his arrival in the country. As a coach, he would be happy with the squad, which has a fine mix of local and overseas talents. The three all-rounders – Andre Russell, Angelo Mathews and Isuru Udana – will be most crucial for Gibbs’s side along with Sri Lanka star Dinesh Chandimal. The former South Africa batsman will also have Rangana Herath by his side as the assistant coach of the team.
Galle Gladiators LPL 2020 head coach: Moin Khan
Moin Khan, the former Pakistan wicketkeeper, will coach the Galle Gladiators, which has two of his compatriots as their key overseas players – Shahid Afridi and Mohammad Amir. He has previously coached the Pakistan national side as well, replacing Dav Whatmore for a two-month stint in 2014. Quetta Gladiators won the 2019 Pakistan Super League under his tutelage too.
Dambulla Viiking LPL 2020 head coach: Owais Shah
Owais Shah will lead a local heavy Dambulla side with Sri Lankan players forming the core of the squad. The former England international coached Rajshahi Royals to the 2019/20 Bangladesh Premier League title but he had a strong squad featuring Andre Russell, Shoaib Malik, Ravi Bopara and Mohammad Irfan – a comfort he won’t have in the LPL this time.
Jaffna Stallions LPL 2020 head coach: Thilina Kandamby
Thilina Kandamby is one of the two Sri Lankan coaches in the mix. The former middle-order batsman played 39 ODIs and five T20Is, even captaining the side in a T20I against England in Bristol. Kandamby does have previous coaching experience at the Sinhalese Sports Club. He will have experienced international players in Shoaib Malik, Thisara Perera and Kyle Abbott at his disposal.