|Full name||Warushavithana Upul Tharanga|
2 February 1985 |
Balapitiya, Sri Lanka
|Height||5 ft 11 in (1.80 m)|
|Relations||Nilanka Vithanage (wife) (m.2011)|
|Test debut (cap 103)||18 December 2005 v India|
|Last Test||3-7 July 2015 v Pakistan|
|ODI debut (cap 125)||2 August 2005 v West Indies|
|Last ODI||19 July 2015 v Pakistan|
|T20I debut (cap 11)||15 June 2006 v England|
|Last T20I||7 August 2012 v India|
|Domestic team information|
|2000–01||Singha Sports Club|
|2003–present||Nondescripts Cricket Club|
|Source: Cricinfo, 19 July 2015|
Upul Tharanga had his education at Dharmasoka College, Ambalangoda. He started his cricket career as a teenager at his school. Having played for Nondescripts since the age of 15, he played for Sri Lanka's under-15, under-17 and under-19 squads. He had a successful under-19 World Cup in 2004 with successful innings of 117 and 61 in successive games. He was sent by the Sri Lankan cricketing board to play league cricket for Loughton Cricket Club in Essex.
Tharanga's Sri Lankan call-up in July 2005 made for a mixed 2005, after his family home was washed away by the Asian tsunami. His equipment, which was also washed away, was replaced by Kumar Sangakkara. Tharanga graduated to the "A" team and in July he was selected for the full squad.
On the 2006 tour of England he really began to develop, particularly in the one-day game, scoring over 300 runs in Sri Lanka's 5–0 whitewash of the hosts. In addition, Tharanga is also well known for taking part in a record-breaking first wicket partnership with Sanath Jayasuriya in the final match of this series. He finished off with 109 off 102 balls, and played a pivotal role in completing the whitewash against England.
Tharanga lost his form in the 2007 World Cup scoring only one half century (against New Zealand) he then continued his poor run of form in the home series against England in 2007 where he failed to contribute and often fell before the 10th over often resulting in a middle-order collapse. Subsequently he lost his ODI place to Malinda Warnapura and his test place to Michael Vandort but he remains within the squad.
However, in the 2011 World Cup, he is back to performing remarkably. In the quarter-final game against England, his partnership with Dilshan could not be pierced. Together they wrapped up the game, each acquiring centuries. His strong form has returned him to the opening position in the strong Sri-Lankan batting line up.
He has also come in for special praise from Jayasuriya, one of the greats of cricket, saying that he could be the next captain of the Sri Lankan cricket team.
On 2 July 2013, Upul Tharanga scored the second highest ODI score of 174* by a Sri Lankan only behind Sanath Jayasuriya who scored 189 against India. With that innings he became the 9th Sri Lankan player to pass 5000 runs margin. Despite of his low match participation, he has earned 13 centuries and 11 man of the match titles for his name throughout his international career.
After 8 years of scarcity for Test cricket, Tharanga was called to the third Test match against Pakistan in 3 July 2015. He was used as the replacement for Kumar Sangakkara who did play for first two Tests, but not to third Test at Kandy, due to his retirement consideration during India tour.  He scored 46 runs in the first innings and 48 in the second innings. However, Sri Lanka lost the series by 2-1.
Tharanga, who had a long ODI scarcity, was included to the ODI squad against Pakistan. Due to the retirement of Kumar Sangakkara, the number three position had a vacant and Sri Lanka cricket selected Tharanga for the crucial number three position in ODIs.
A urine sample provided by Tharanga after the world cup semi-final against New Zealand on 29 March 2011 was found to have metabolites of two glucocorticosteroids – prednisone and prednisolone, which are banned by the World Anti-Doping Agency. Tharanga initially claimed he had taken some medication for asthma and had no idea it was a banned drug.
An independent anti-doping tribunal was convened at which Tharanga pleaded guilty, claiming he had taken some herbal remedy to ease discomfort caused by a long-standing shoulder injury. The tribunal accepted that Tharanga "had no intention to enhance his sporting performance or to mask the use of another performance enhancing substance, but that he had failed to satisfy the high levels of personal responsibility implicit upon him as an international cricketer subject to anti-doping rules". The tribunal found Tharanga guilty of breaching the ICC Anti-Doping Code and banned him from all cricket and cricket-related activities for a three-month period (9 May 2011 to 8 August 2011).
Tharanga is known to married. But, there were some controversial instances went around the country about a relationship between him and Tillakaratne Dilshan's ex-wife Nilanka Vithanage. The problems arose when Dilshan was married to Thilanka, and the problem behind divorcing her is the affair with Tharanga. The two pair also opening the batting for Sri Lanka national cricket team in ODIs very often. However, now Tharanga is married to Thilanka. Tharanga and Nilanka had their affair since school times, as Tharanga said for newspapers.
- In the column Runs, * indicates being not out
- The column title Match refers to the Match Number of the player's career
|Upul Tharanga's Test centuries|
|||165||3||Bangladesh||Bogra, Bangladesh||Shaheed Chandu Stadium||2006||Won by Sri Lanka|
One Day International centuries
Highest One Day International Partnership Involvements
The following table illustrates a summary of 200+ ODI partnerships in which Upul Tharanga involved.
- The column title Runs refers to the total runs he scored throughout the inning.
- In the column Runs, * indicates being not out
|200+ One Day International partnerships in which Upul Tharanga involved|
|||286||109||Sanath Jayasuriya||1||England||Leeds, England||Headingley||2006||ODI # 2389|
|||201||68||Sanath Jayasuriya||1||New Zealand||Napier, New Zealand||McLean Park||2006||ODI # 2468|
|||202||76||Mahela Jayawardene||1||Pakistan||Dambulla, Sri Lanka||Rangiri Dambulla International Stadium||2009||ODI # 2867|
|||215||118*||Mahela Jayawardene||1||Bangladesh||Dhaka, Bangladesh||S.B National Stadium||2010||ODI # 2940|
|||282||133||Tillakaratne Dilshan||1||Zimbabwe||Kandy, Sri Lanka||Pallekele International Cricket Stadium||2011||ODI # 3125|
|||231*||102*||Tillakaratne Dilshan||1||England||Colombo, Sri Lanka||R Premadasa Stadium||2011||ODI # 3145|
|||213||174*||Mahela Jayawardene||1||India||Kingston, Jamaica||Sabina Park||2013||ODI # 3382|
One-Day International Cricket – Man of the Match Awards
- "Tharanga called in as replacement for Sangakkara". Cricbuzz. 3 July 2015.
- "Upul Tharanga found guilty of breaching ICC Anti-Doping Code". International Cricket Council. 24 June 2011.
- Pathirana, Saroj (8 June 2011). "Sri Lanka confirm Upul Tharanga dope test positive". BBC Sport.
- "Sri Lanka's Upul Tharanga banned for three months for doping violation". The Guardian. 24 June 2011.
- "Sri Lanka opener Tharanga banned for three months after positive drug test". Daily Mail. 24 June 2011.
- "Bangladeshi cricket team in Sri Lanka in 2005–06 – Scorecard of 2nd Match". ESPNcricinfo. Retrieved 3 July 2013.
- "Sri Lankan cricket team in New Zealand in 2005–06 – Scorecard of the 2nd ODI". ESPNcricinfo. Retrieved 3 July 2013.
- "Sri Lankan cricket team in England in 2006 – Scorecard of the 1st ODI". ESPNcricinfo. Retrieved 3 July 2013.
- "2006 ICC Champions Trophy – Scorecard of the 1st qualifying Match". ESPNcricinfo. Retrieved 3 July 2013.
- "2006 ICC Champions Trophy – Scorecard of the 3rd qualifying Match". ESPNcricinfo. Retrieved 3 July 2013.
- "Tri-Series in Bangladesh in 2009–10 – Scorecard of 4th match". ESPNcricinfo. Retrieved 3 July 2013.
- "Sri Lanka Triangular Series in 2010 – Scorecard of the 2nd Match". ESPNcricinfo. Retrieved 3 July 2013.
- "Sri Lankan cricket team in Australia in 2010–11 – Scorecard of the 2nd Match". ESPNcricinfo. Retrieved 3 July 2013.
- "West Indian cricket team in Sri Lanka in 2010–11 – Scorecard of the 2nd Match". ESPNcricinfo. Retrieved 3 July 2013.
- "Australian cricket team in Sri Lanka in 2011 – Scorecard of the 3rd Match". ESPNcricinfo. Retrieved 3 July 2013.
- "West Indies Triangular Series in 2013 – Scorecard of the 3rd Match". ESPNcricinfo. Retrieved 3 July 2013.