Handunnettige Deepthi Priyantha Kumar Dharmasena (born 24 April 1971) more commonly known as Kumar Dharmasena (Sinhala: කුමාර ධර්මසේන) or by his nickname Unanduwa, is a Sri Lankan cricket umpire and former international cricketer, who played Tests and ODIs for Sri Lanka. He was a key member of the Sri Lanka team that won the 1996 Cricket World Cup. He was a right-handed batsman and a right-arm off break bowler.
Kumar Dharmasena umpiring in the 2015 Cricket World Cup
|Full name||Handunnettigay Deepthi Priyantha Kumar Dharmasena|
|Born||24 April 1971|
Colombo, Sri Lanka
|Height||1.72 m (5 ft 8 in)|
|Test debut (cap 59)||6 September 1993 v South Africa|
|Last Test||8 March 2004 v Australia|
|ODI debut (cap 82)||24 August 1994 v Pakistan|
|Last ODI||25 February 2004 v Australia|
|ODI shirt no.||66|
|Domestic team information|
|1988–2006||Bloomfield Cricket and Athletic Club|
|1992||Nondescripts Cricket Club|
|1994||Moratuwa Cricket Club|
|Tests umpired||60 (2010–2019)|
|ODIs umpired||103 (2009–2019)|
|T20Is umpired||22 (2009–2016)|
Source: Cricinfo, 14 July 2019
His obscure action made him perfect for bowling in one-day matches, yet Dharmasena also proved a useful batsman, especially after he was investigated in 1998 by the ICC for overstretching his bowling action to illegal proportions. Having been cleared in July 2000, he played for the one-day team on several occasions since, but rarely played Test cricket.
Dharmasena was the 59th Sri Lankan cricketer to receive a Test cap (Sri Lanka v South Africa at Colombo Sinhalese Sports Club 1993).
Kumar Dharmasena has the record for playing the most number of ODI innings before being dismissed for a duck (72 innings).
Move to umpiring
Following his retirement from playing in November 2006, Dharmasena announced plans to become a competitive umpire, as he wished to remain "close to the game which I love so dearly". Prior to his retirement, he had already umpired several domestic matches in the Sara Trophy, the major first-class cricket tournament in Sri Lanka. He umpired his first international match in 2009, overseeing the one-day international between India and Sri Lanka at the Rangiri International Stadium in Dambulla: he remains the youngest ever Sri Lankan to umpire any international match. He umpired at the 2011 Cricket World Cup, and was appointed to the Elite Panel of ICC Umpires later that year. Dharmasena was named the Umpire of the Year at the 2012 ICC Awards, for which he received the David Shepherd Trophy.
He was selected as one of the twenty umpires to stand in matches during the 2015 Cricket World Cup and umpired in the final. In doing so he became the first to play in and to umpire World Cup finals. He stood in the final of the 2016 ICC World Twenty20.
Kumar Dharmasena has worked as an umpire in 18 matches of ICC World T20, the most by any umpire from Sri Lanka.
DRS which is the shortened form of Decision review system, is often humorously called as Dharmasena Review System for his umpiring. Even though he was ranked number 1 in the world for his umpiring, Dharmasena has slightly struggled in providing the judgements in recent past. This was especially evident in the English cricket team in Bangladesh in 2016–17 series, as in the First Test at Chittagong, Dharmasena judged that Moeen Ali was out on three occasions in one innings. All three appeals were from the same bowler, Shakib Al Hasan. Moeen Ali appealed against Dharmasena's three decisions and survived all three. This was the first time in cricketing history that a batsman successfully managed to overturn the umpire's decisions for 3 times in a row in the same innings.
In January 2019, he won the David Shepherd Trophy for the ICC Umpire of the Year at the 2018 ICC Awards. In April 2019, he was named as one of the sixteen umpires to stand in matches during the 2019 Cricket World Cup. In July 2019, he was named as one of the two on-field umpires for the second semi-final match, between Australia and England. Later the same month, he was also named as one of the two on-field umpires for the Cricket World Cup Final.
- Austin, Charlie. "Kumar Dharmasena". ESPNcricinfo. Retrieved 16 December 2012.
- "International cricketers turned umpires". International Cricket Council. Retrieved 7 April 2018.
- "Records | One-Day Internationals | Batting records | Most innings before first duck | ESPN Cricinfo". Cricinfo. Retrieved 22 February 2017.
- "Cricket Records | Records | Sri Lanka | One-Day Internationals | Highest partnerships by wicket | ESPN Cricinfo". Cricinfo. Retrieved 28 March 2017.
- "Only ODI: West Indies v Sri Lanka at Port of Spain, Jun 6, 1997 | Cricket Scorecard | ESPN Cricinfo". Cricinfo. Retrieved 28 March 2017.
- Thawfeeq, Sa'adi (15 November 2006). "Kumar Dharmasena to pursue umpiring career". ESPNcricinfo. Retrieved 16 December 2012.
- "Sri Lanka v. India, 2008–09". Wisden Cricketer's Almanack. 36 Soho Square, London: John Wisden & Co. 2010. p. 1333. ISBN 978-1-4081-24642.
- "Match Officials – Emirates Elite Panel of Umpires". International Cricket Council. Archived from the original on 16 December 2012. Retrieved 16 December 2012.
- "Kumar Dharmasena voted Umpire of the Year". ESPNcricinfo. 15 September 2012. Retrieved 16 December 2012.
- "ICC announces match officials for ICC Cricket World Cup 2015". ICC Cricket. 2 December 2014. Archived from the original on 30 March 2015. Retrieved 12 February 2015.
- "ICC Cricket World Cup, Final: Australia v New Zealand at Melbourne, Mar 29, 2015". ESPN Cricinfo. 29 March 2015. Retrieved 29 March 2015.
- Jesse Hogan (28 March 2015). "Cricket World Cup: Kumar Dharmasena first to play and umpire in final". Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 25 January 2016.
- "World T20, Final: England v West Indies at Kolkata, Apr 3, 2016". ESPN Cricinfo. Retrieved 10 April 2016.
- "Cricket Records | Records | World T20 | Most matches as an umpire | ESPN Cricinfo". Cricinfo. Retrieved 25 February 2017.
- "Dharmasena's unwanted record". Cricinfo. Retrieved 22 February 2017.
- "Finch, Macleod, Pant and Williamson named for ICC Player Awards". International Cricket Council. Retrieved 22 January 2019.
- "Match officials for ICC Men's Cricket World Cup 2019 announced". International Cricket Council. Retrieved 26 April 2019.
- "Umpire Ian Gould to retire after World Cup". ESPN Cricinfo. Retrieved 26 April 2019.
- "Officials appointed for ICC Men's Cricket World Cup semi-finals". International Cricket Council. Retrieved 7 July 2019.
- "Kumar Dharmasena to umpire final despite Jason Roy controversy". ESPN Cricinfo. Retrieved 12 July 2019.