Harsha de Silva – a cricket coach par excellence
Then he got in to coaching and was the Head Coach of St Joseph’s College, Colombo from 2001-2010. Head coach of Ragama CC from 2008-2010. Head Coach of Sri Lanka Women’s National team from 2010-2013 and 2018- 2020. Women’s Head Coach of Valleys DCC Australia from 2016-2018. Australian Club Coach of Wynnum Manly DCC from 2013-2016 and from 2020
Speaking to Daily News all the way from Australia Harsha said “My journey into the world of sports started because of my Alma mater St Joseph’s College, Colombo. They had a fantastic sports programme and also my parents backing”.
“There are many people who have supported me, especially as someone who has played from junior level for over 15 years to currently coaching for nearly
25 years, there are countless individuals and institutes who have supported me to take me where I am today. But, I would fail if I don’t mention St.. Joseph’s College for giving me an opportunity as a rookie coach to start my career, SSC Cricket Academy, Ragama Cricket Club, Sri Lanka Cricket, Wynnum Manly DCC (Australia), Valleys DCC (Australia) officials and players for the opportunities and their support. And my parents, family members, wife, daughters and close mates who have been there through thick and thin. Hence I am always grateful to all of them”.
“I Still don’t know what it was and why I choose the sport of Cricket. But, somehow found a connection. I was the only son growing up with four sisters. My Father didn’t play cricket. So, no one at home played cricket. but my cousins were ardent cricket fans”.
“I believe they keep evolving at different stages of your life. But at this stage for me my priority is my beloved three daughters future”. “It’s easy to be a cricketer if you are loving it and living it. But It gets hard when you go through a bad run and you don’t have a support system. Also when you have to be away from family for long periods in current day bio bubbles and other restrictions. But, they will all end soon. So stay positive. Believe in the process and your ability to perform”. “There are many unforgettable incidents In a 40 year old career as a player and coach, it’s hard to pick one.The below memories stands out above all.
They are Coaching a National Team, Coaching in four ICC World Cups, Joes winning an annual 50 over game against Pete’s in 1989, Joes winning the annual
Joe-Pete Big Match in 2008 after 36 long years, Joes winning against Ananda
College, Colombo after 70 years in 2010, Sri Lanka Women beating much fancied England, India and South Africa in the 2013 ICC World Cup to reach
number five ranking in World Cricket. Hence all these incidents will always be in my memory right throughout my whole life as the most unforgettable incidents to date”.
“I spend my leisure time relaxing at home with the family and watching movies and my favourite destination is Sri Lanka. My greatest accomplishment is as a coach helping players reach the next level. There’s no greater joy than a player you mentor calling or messaging
to say they’ve been selected to represent their school, club, State or National team. Proud to say there have been a few”.
“The best compliment that i got was When I hear someone sincerely saying
I’ve played a part in their lives to make a positive impact “. ” In life I always wanted to be the best person I can be at that time of point”
“Yes I’m happy with what I have achieved so far, hence I can’t be any happier”. “my favourite crickerter was always Steve Waugh for his toughness to perform under pressure”.
“Without belief you won’t have the courage and confidence to do what you do best”. My most embarrassing moment on the Cricket field that i will never forget was Collecting a pair of specs in my first Big Match in 1989 and losing the Big match to St Peters College in my last game as coach in 2010”
“In life the pandemic has taught me the Importance of spending time with your loved ones and realising how much more we can achieve working remotely”.
“I used to ride horses as a kid. Grew up wanting to be a race jockey. I am
glad it didn’t plan out that way”. “The kind of legacy i wanted to be remembered for is being a fair and reasonable person who is always there to back you up when you need it the most”.
On a concluding note Harsha said that he likes to describe himself as a feeler and a thinker”.COURTESY CEYLON DAILY NEWS