|Player Status||Placed - Himley CC (Birmingham & District Premier Cricket League)|
|Player Type||All-Rounder (Spin)||Player Role||LH Top-Order Bat | RA Leg-Break|
|Entry Route||Tier 5 Points Based System|
|Major Teams||Sri Lanka U19s, Sri Lanka Schools, Bloomfield Cricket & Athletic Club|
Nipun Karunanayake (25) is a high-class player currently skippering Bloomfield Cricket and Athletic Club in the top tier (A) of Sri Lanka’s Premier League Tournament. This summer (2016/17), his performances have pushed him into the national frame. He is the second leading first-class run-scorer with 824 runs at 54.93, including a personal batting milestone in 6 of his 8 first-class matches, namely 124 (v Nondescripts), 108 (v Badureliya), 77 (v Sinhalese), 62 (v Tamil Union), 183 (v Galle) and 98 (v Burgher).
The explosive left-handed batsman, who also bowls regular leg-spin at domestic level, has now scored over 2,500 first-class runs with 5 centuries, alongside 20 wickets at 44.60 with best figures of 3-67.
Karunanayake has long been regarded as a player of national potential. He featured for both the Sri Lankan Schools (2007/08) and played 4 matches for the Sri Lankan Under-19s against Australia (2 Youth ODI’s in 2009) and England (2 Youth Tests in 2010). During the latter, after batting at 6 in the opening Test, he was moved to the top of the order in the second and struck 90 against an England attack featuring Jake Ball (Eng/Notts), Daniel Payne (Gloucs), Adam Ball (Kent), Lewis Gregory (Somerset) and Joe Root (Eng/Yorks).
Thereafter, Karunanayake made his first-class debut for Bloomfield in 2010/11, scoring 349 runs at 23.26 with a highest score of 91 in his maiden domestic summer. A lean 2011/12 preceded a 2012/13 season where he hit 258 runs at 21.50 with 2 half-centuries and his maiden ton (103).
It was this century that kick-started his first-class career. In 2013/14, he enjoyed a breakthrough season racking up 446 runs at 40.54, including his career-best 248. Karunanayake has since followed up with 338 runs at 30.72 (2014/15) and 304 runs at 38 (2015/16) before his current and most prolific summer to date.
The in-form batting all-rounder is now eager to transfer his success abroad with his maiden UK league cricket stint in 2017. A player that comes highly recommended and someone who’ll make a huge impact for whatever club he plays for next summer.
Statistical record last updated 26th March, 2017
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