Weekend Story- Marvan’s Resilience
November 20, 2023
It was his test debut for Sri Lanka in 1990 and great things were expected from this twenty-year-old. Marvan Attapatu scored a duck in his first innings. And again, in his second innings.
The team dropped him.
Marvan went back to the nets for more practice. More first-class cricket. More runs. Waiting for that elusive test recall.
And the second chance came after a long wait of twenty-one months
The recall happened but the result followed the same pattern. His scores were 0 in the first innings, and 1 in the second.
Again Marvan was dropped from the team, and he had no choice but to go back to the grind. He practiced and practiced, and scored tonnes of runs in first-class cricket. It did not matter. The memory of the test failures lingered and created some doubt- Am I good enough for test cricket?
Seventeen months later, opportunity knocked yet again with a third chance. What do you think Marvan’s score was? : 0 and 0, in the two innings.
Fate was really conspiring against Marvan. He was dropped again. This time there was a big question mark about his career. He had choked on the big stage three times. Did he have the big match temperament? Even if he did well in domestic cricket, did he deserve another chance?
Undaunted, Marvan kept working hard and kept scoring lots of runs in the domestic cricket circuit.
Three years later, Lady Luck finally smiled and he got a test recall the fourth time. This time, he made runs, lots of runs. He had finally redeemed himself and never looked back from that point.
Marvan went on to have an illustrious career scoring over 5000 runs for Sri Lanka, with sixteen centuries and six double hundreds. And the icing on the cake- He went on to captain his country !!
Six years of trying, and failing. Six years to score his first runs in test cricket but then going on to create history. How many of us can handle failure as well as Marvan did?