“It has always been wonderful to work with Rumesh,” says Bhutan’s Head of Coaching Damber Singh Gurung of ACC Development Officer Rumesh Ratnayake, “his way of teaching is very simple and easy to adapt things quickly.” Perfect for a country which has been emerging from hopers to challengers to potential Elite level perennials. On a six-day visit to Bhutan this month Rumesh worked with the coaches and senior squad on all that they should aspire to.

“Staying in Pepsi ICC World Cricket League is very important. ACC Elite competitions are tougher until WCL Division 1 and 2 but what the lower divisions do is expose a country to cricketers and conditions from all the regions and takes them out of their bubble and comfort zone. Real success in cricket and life comes from moving out of your comfort zone into a higher level,” says the former Sri Lankan international and recent interim coach of Sri Lanka. “Game sense is the critical factor in matches and which separates the players who train from the players who know how to win and Bhutan are one of those countries that just don’t play enough top-level games at the moment,” says Rumesh.

There has been considerable growth in Bhutan’s domestic cricket over the past four years, with schools and junior cricket competitions for boys and girls as well as a senior men’s Twenty20 which is passionately followed.

Rumesh stayed in Bhutan’s capital Thimphu during this visit, yet Bhutan’s recent successes have not just been on the playing field. The Bhutan Cricket Council Board have taken the game to other regions, braving bumpy rides across rivers and streams, up and over hills and inclines. It has not been easy, but once cricket has reached these outposts it has taken root. “In his next visit, we are planning to take him to Punakha and conduct same kind of activity for coaches and talented players there,” says Damber.

Pictures from Bhutan Cricket Council Board

Bhutan Cricket Profile

Filed May 28th, 2012