Woodford Wells have pulled off a coup with the signing of Sri Lankan A opening batter, Sangeeth Cooray, for their 2024 Essex League campaign.

Cooray is, quite possibly, Sri Lanka’s next Test opening bat. A gritty, and accomplished left-hander, he is one of domestic cricket’s most consistent run-churners.

His exploits for Colts, in both first-class (4,500 plus runs averaging early 40s) and List A (1,700 plus runs averaging late 30s), have culminated with Sri Lankan Board, Emerging Players, and ‘A’ inclusion in recent years.

In June 2019, he struck scores of 88 and 61 for the latter against their Indian counterparts. He was then involved with the Emerging Players Tri-Series the following month. In March 2020, he also showed his all-round prowess, bagging the wicket of Keaton Jennings during England’s tour of Sri Lanka.

In domestic cricket, he has been a stand-out performer since his barnstorming 2016/17 summer, where he averaged 68.33 and 71.12 in first-class and List A, respectively.

He has followed up with 612 runs at 32.21 (2017/18), 931 runs at 66.50 (2018/19), 292 runs at 26.54 (2019/20), 382 runs at 54.57 (2021/22), and 745 runs at 46.56 (2022/23).

Cooray has a penchant for banging out big scores. In Sri Lanka’s Premier Tournament (Tier A), he has 12 hundreds, including notable scores of 160, 189, and 200.

The run machine is clearly destined for international cricket and his selection only seems a matter of time. For now, though, Cooray will continue to churn runs at domestic level before returning to the UK in 2024, following his two-season stint with Bradford League club Morley in 2017-18.

Whilst he didn’t perhaps score the volume of runs he’s clearly capable of during his two-season stint, he still managed 632 runs at 42.18 during his second outing. He did, though, show his ability with the ball, accounting for 60 wickets at 17.53 over his two seasons with his off-spin.

Cooray will be out to set the record straight in 2024 having signed with Woodford Wells for their Essex League campaign.