The language barrier can make it hard at times for Taylors Lakes Cricket Club captain Jarrod Wakeling to truly gauge how the club’s import Dilshan Kanchana is feeling inside his new club.
Wakeling sensed it was a nervous young man in Kanchana when he arrived at the start of the season, which is understandable being so far away from home in a foreign country.
However, in recent weeks, Kanchana appears more at ease in his new surroundings and his cricket is benefiting as a result.
“He’s a youngster who is coming to a new country and his English is limited, so from that perspective it was always going to be difficult,” Wakeling said.
“In terms of his overall cricket, what I have noticed in the last couple of weeks is that he seems a lot more confident and he’s playing a bit more within himself, whereas I think he was probably a bit nervous at the start.”
Kanchana has offered glimpses into his personality and his game that suggests he could be a weapon for Taylors Lakes in the second half of the Victorian Sub-District Cricket Association season.
Having impressed with scores of 70 and 40 with the bat, it was time for Kanchana to show why he came to Australia with a reputation as a quality all-rounder.
To the detriment of opposition club Ormond, the 23-year-old from Galle finally had his break-out bowling performance last round with a simply stunning 8-33 off 12.2 overs, eclipsing the club’s first XI record of 8-52 produced by Wakeling earlier this year.
Taylors Lakes president Rob Arnold said it took a while for Kanchana to find his feet within the team and that it brought up some question marks that were totally dispelled in his eight-wicket haul. “The concern was that maybe he didn’t move the ball enough, but he clearly showed that he can with his latest bowling performance,” Arnold said.
“His last five wickets were all caught behind by the wicketkeeper, where they all seemed to waved the bat out, the ball would move past and get the fine edge, so he’s getting a bit more variance into his bowling.”
First year Taylors Lakes coach Janaka Deegodagamage has been a mentor for Kanchana since his arrival. Arnold credits Deegodagamage for the improvements in Kanchana’s game in a short space of time.
“It helps that our coach is an ex-high performance coach from the Sri Lankan national side and speaks the native tongue,” Arnold said.
“He was barking out some instructions to him [during the eight-wicket haul] and Dilshan must’ve taken it on board.
“He’s an outstanding coach and the work he’s been putting in with Dilshan has been coming to fruition.”