Colombo: Sri Lanka's chief cricket coach Rumesh Ratnayake warned that the country's cricket could face a massive crisis in the fast bowling department if corrective measures are not taken soon.
Ahead of the two T-20s, five ODIs and three Tests against Australia, Ratnayake, a former fast bowler, said he was satisfied with the current crop of fast bowlers, but was worried about their future as there is a serious dearth of pacers in the country.
"We have a dearth of fast bowling talent. I was speaking to Champaka (Ramanayake) and he reckons that although we are satisfied with what we have on the top, there's some vacuum in the middle level and we need to address that," Ratnayake was quoted as saying by The Island.
"It's easy to say that we have a good set at the moment. But what are we going to do to reduce the vacuum? We might have to look into the school system, club structure and all. I really didn't go into it and do a study as such, but it would be interesting to see why it has happened. Speaking to a few, I hear that there are no fast bowlers in the scene. To me it's an issue," Ratnayake said.
The chief is concerned at the trend of new ball being used by spinners in school cricket.
"Clubs you can say that because of wickets and what we have got to play with they can try things out. But at school level if that's a norm that a spinner opens all the time. Then it's worrying," Ratnayake said.
"The board is looking at it and wants to bring in a rule that a fast bowler has to bowl a certain amount of overs. We will have to do something to bring back the interest in fast bowlers before they reach the age of 18 or 19," he said.