Former Test Players in High
Profile Tour of Sri Lanka
By Walter Jayawardhana
Former New Zealand bowler Danny Morrison and Pakistan
opener Aamir Sohail are taking part in the inaugural tour of Sri Lanka
by the English nomadic side Stoics Crusaders, starting on February 3,
a co-manager of Stoics, Chris Heron said..
Founded 134 years ago, the Stoics - the word means "making virtue
the highest good" - have 205 members and this will be their first
tour abroad. Raman Subba Row, who managed the first England tour of
Sri Lanka in 1982, and Dave Whatmore,former Sri Lankan coach who led
the team to a world cup victory are members of Stoics, he said.
The tour was launched on January 24 at The Sri Lankan High Commission
in Hyde Park, London when Kshenuka Senewiratne, the Sri Lankan High
Commissioner, told the thirty strong party "cricket is a great
bridge builder in our country and it will be a wonderful experience
Gavin Scovell who has produced and directed scores of Test matches for
Channel 4, Sky and ESPN around the world, planned the tour along with
co-manager Chris Heron. He thanked the Commissioner for her support
and explained the origins of the declaration in cricket.
"I know the Sri Lankans like limited overs matches but we prefer
the more gentlemanly way of playing one day games," he said. "A.E.
Stoddart, who captained England at both cricket and rugby and was known
as 'My dear victorious Stod', came up with the idea of the declaration
after he scored a then world record 485 for the Stoics against Hampstead
in 1886. His later years saw his hopes and health decline and he shot
himself through the head in 1915."
Gerald Plumbly, the Queen's former veterinary surgeon, is the President
of The Stoics at the age of 93 but unfortunately he won't be in Sri
Lanka. There will be five matches, all played at Test grounds, at Dambulla,
Kandy, Galle and the Sinhalese Sports Club. The party will be staying
at the Cinnamon Lodge in Habarana, the Earls Regency Hotel in Kandy,
Beach Villas in Galle and the Mount Lavinia in Colombia.
The tour, which has been organised by Reddot Tours, will conclude with
a three day stopover in the Maldives, arriving back in London on February
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