Sri Lanka army promotion for Mendis after Asia Cup victory

Chief Regulatory Officer at CSE Renuke Wijayawardhane presenting the listing certificate to Executive Chairperson at Renuka Hotels Shibani Thambiayah

July 9, 2008 (AFP) – Sri Lanka’s new spin sensation Ajantha Mendis has been given a double promotion in the army after his exploits in the Asia Cup final, officials said on Wednesday. Mendis, 23, a gunner, was promoted to 2nd lieutenant by President Mahinda Rajapakse, who is also commander-in-chief of the armed forces.

Mendis destroyed India with record-breaking figures of 6-13 as Sri Lanka won Sunday’s Asia Cup final in Karachi by 100 runs.

It was the best bowling performance in the continental tournament, surpassing Pakistani Aaqib Javed’s 5-19 against India in Sharjah in 1995.

Mendis, who hails from the Colombo suburb of Moratuwa, finished with 17 wickets in the tournament.

“I am delighted to have played a part in Sri Lanka’s victory,” Mendis said after returning from Pakistan.

“I just want to bowl as best as I can every time I come to the bowling crease. I did that on Sunday.”

The young Mendis uses an unusual grip in which he appears to squeeze the ball out of his fingers, bowling off-spin, leg-spin, googly, the top-spinner and the flipper.

India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni was the first to concede that Mendis was simply unplayable.

“We j