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T20 World Cup: Chamari Athapaththu of Sri Lanka has high expectations for the squad in 2024

Superstar Chamari Athapaththu of Sri Lanka, one of the best players of 2023 in white ball cricket, has her sights set on the major prize in the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup later this year. Athapaththu is aiming further this year at the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup 2024, after her triumph as the ICC Women’s ODI Player of the Year.

The Sri Lankan captain recalled her amazing 2023 season, which included winning the significant ICC award, and she said that one of the main drivers of her success was because she didn’t sell at the Women’s Premier League [WPL] auction.

According to Athapathuthu, “internationally, it was the best year of my career,” Cricbuzz said. In 2023, we did really well as a team, as well as as batters and captains. I received nominations for T20 and ICC Player of the Year as well as the ODI Player of the Year award because of those achievements. To tell the truth, I had no idea that I would be selected captain of both teams for the year.

After a remarkable year in which the Sri Lankan side achieved many milestones, Athapaththu was awarded the ICC’s Women’s ODI and T20I team of the year.

Sri Lanka defeated New Zealand in their first-ever bilateral series thanks to Athapaththu. With two explosive hundreds that completely destroyed New Zealand, the top-order batsman stole the show in both wins.

She made pressure chases for her 108 undefeated and 140 not out, and both times, the opener was at the crease to lead her side to win. “Last year, we also won against New Zealand in women’s cricket,” Athapaththu said.

“We had never defeated them in any format, but as a squad, we were quite proud of ourselves after winning the ODI series and the T20I. After that, we traveled to England and defeated the English team there as well. These are some of the greatest things that occurred in the previous year, but sometimes I thought that, in spite of everything we accomplished, neither the team nor I really received the credit we deserved,” she said.

With her career being officially behind her, Athapaththu declares that she has accomplished “every individual goal I have set for myself.” However, the seasoned Sri Lankan player said she would put it quits if the squad could reach the same team objective later this year at the T20 World Cup.

“My objective is to continue playing for a maximum of two more years,” Athapaththu said.

“I’ll just mention that there will be a T20 World Cup this year. I may retire the next day if we win or advance to the tournament final. Looking back, I can say that I have accomplished every single objective I set for myself. However, the team objective still has to be accomplished, and I’ll do all in my power to make it happen,” she said.

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