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Handunnettige Deepthi Priyantha Kumar Dharmasena (born 24 April 1971) more commonly known as Kumar Dharmasena or by his nickname Unanduwa,[1] is a Sri Lankan cricket umpire and former international cricketer, who played Tests and ODIs for Sri Lanka.[2] 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
Kumar Dharmasena umpiring.png
Kumar Dharmasena umpiring in the 2015 Cricket World Cup
Personal information
Full nameHandunnettige Deepthi Priyantha Kumar Dharmasena
Born (1971-04-24) 24 April 1971 (age 47)
Colombo, Sri Lanka
Height1.72 m (5 ft 8 in)
BowlingRight-arm offbreak
RoleAll-rounder, Umpire
International information
National side
Test debut (cap 59)6 September 1993 v South Africa
Last Test8 March 2004 v Australia
ODI debut (cap 82)24 August 1994 v Pakistan
Last ODI25 February 2004 v Australia
ODI shirt no.66
Domestic team information
1988–2006Bloomfield Cricket and Athletic Club
1992Nondescripts Cricket Club
1994Moratuwa Cricket Club
Umpiring information
Tests umpired57 (2010–2018)
ODIs umpired89 (2009–2018)
T20Is umpired22 (2009–2016)
Career statistics
Competition Test ODI FC LA
Matches 31 141 155 206
Runs scored 868 1222 6550 2281
Batting average 19.72 22.62 36.18 26.21
100s/50s 0/3 0/4 9/37 0/9
Top score 62* 69* 157 94*
Balls bowled 6939 7009 25549 9747
Wickets 69 138 495 234
Bowling average 42.31 36.21 20.77 28.62
5 wickets in innings 3 0 30 3
10 wickets in match 0 5
Best bowling 6/72 4/37 7/30 5/14
Catches/stumpings 14/– 34/– 78/– 50/–
Source: ESPNcricinfo, 6 December 2018


Playing careerEdit

Dharmasena started his cricketing career as a teenager at Nalanda College Colombo. His first foray into international cricket was in 1994 against South Africa.

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).[3]

He along with Dulip Liyanage set the record for the highest 8th wicket runstand for Sri Lanka in ODI cricket (91).[4][5]

Move to umpiringEdit

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".[6] Prior to his retirement, he had already umpired several domestic matches in the Sara Trophy, the major first-class cricket tournament in Sri Lanka.[6] 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:[7] he remains the youngest ever Sri Lankan to umpire any international match.[8] He umpired at the 2011 Cricket World Cup, and was appointed to the Elite Panel of ICC Umpires later that year.[1] Dharmasena was named the Umpire of the Year at the 2012 ICC Awards, for which he received the David Shepherd Trophy.[9] As of 2017, he is the only Sri Lankan to receive this precious award.

He was selected as one of the twenty umpires to stand in matches during the 2015 Cricket World Cup[10] and umpired in the final.[11] In doing so he became the first to play in and to umpire World Cup finals.[12] He stood in the final of the 2016 ICC World Twenty20.[13]

Kumar Dharmasena has worked as an umpire in 18 matches of ICC World T20, the most by any umpire from Sri Lanka.[14]

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, has slightly struggled in providing the judgements in recent past. Especially in the English cricket team in Bangladesh in 2016–17 series, in the first test at Chittagong Dharmasena judged that Moeen Ali was out on three occasions in the same test, also in the same innings and also off the same bowler, Shakib Al Hasan and in the end Moeen Ali appealed against Dharmasena's all three decisions and survived. 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.[15]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ a b Austin, Charlie. "Kumar Dharmasena". ESPNcricinfo. Retrieved 16 December 2012.
  2. ^ "International cricketers turned umpires". International Cricket Council. Retrieved 7 April 2018.
  3. ^ "Records | One-Day Internationals | Batting records | Most innings before first duck | ESPN Cricinfo". Cricinfo. Retrieved 22 February 2017.
  4. ^ "Cricket Records | Records | Sri Lanka | One-Day Internationals | Highest partnerships by wicket | ESPN Cricinfo". Cricinfo. Retrieved 28 March 2017.
  5. ^ "Only ODI: West Indies v Sri Lanka at Port of Spain, Jun 6, 1997 | Cricket Scorecard | ESPN Cricinfo". Cricinfo. Retrieved 28 March 2017.
  6. ^ a b Thawfeeq, Sa'adi (15 November 2006). "Kumar Dharmasena to pursue umpiring career". ESPNcricinfo. Retrieved 16 December 2012.
  7. ^ "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.
  8. ^ "Match Officials – Emirates Elite Panel of Umpires". International Cricket Council. Archived from the original on 16 December 2012. Retrieved 16 December 2012.
  9. ^ "Kumar Dharmasena voted Umpire of the Year". ESPNcricinfo. 15 September 2012. Retrieved 16 December 2012.
  10. ^ "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.
  11. ^ "ICC Cricket World Cup, Final: Australia v New Zealand at Melbourne, Mar 29, 2015". ESPN Cricinfo. 29 March 2015. Retrieved 29 March 2015.
  12. ^ Jesse Hogan (28 March 2015). "Cricket World Cup: Kumar Dharmasena first to play and umpire in final". Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 25 January 2016.
  13. ^ "World T20, Final: England v West Indies at Kolkata, Apr 3, 2016". ESPN Cricinfo. Retrieved 10 April 2016.
  14. ^ "Cricket Records | Records | World T20 | Most matches as an umpire | ESPN Cricinfo". Cricinfo. Retrieved 25 February 2017.
  15. ^ "Dharmasena's unwanted record". Cricinfo. Retrieved 22 February 2017.

External linksEdit