CLOSE coaching from Russells Creek legend and mentor Jayaweera Bandara is helping Sri Lankan import Rukshan Weerasinghe realise his potential.
The 25-year-old blasted an unbeaten 43 to steer Russells Creek past East Warrnambool on Saturday.
Weerasinghe steadied for Creek after captain Cam Williams (16) and promoted opener Riley Owen (2) were dismissed early in the piece.
Bandara said the diminutive Sri Lankan had improved the technical side of his game through “hard work” at training.
“He played more straight shots for us,” he said.
“We spoke about playing straight on Thursday because Warrnambool wickets tend to keep pretty low.
“That’s why a lot of the guys from the sub continent find it a bit hard when they first come out. But ‘Rookie’ batted well for us.”
Creek was buoyed by a range of wicket-takers, including three from Matt Petherick and two each to Blake Evans and Joe Kenna.
The recently-retired Bandara told The Standard Russells Creek was vying to build form for two-day cricket through short-form victories.
“This week was the last one-day game until the short form stuff finishes for a little while, so we’ve been thinking about the longer form,” he said. “We need to learn to bat for long periods of time.
”Shashan (Silva) batted reasonably well and he’s another who will suit longer-form cricket. He’s a very technical batsman.”
Creek plays Nestles at Jetty Flat next week.