In honour of the late Percy Abeysekera, the renowned cheerleader, Sri Lankan players and support personnel wore black armbands during their World Cup 2023 match against India at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai on Thursday.
Sri Lankan players wore black armbands during their ODI World Cup match against India to pay tribute to Percy Abeysekera, the legendary’super fan’ who died a few days earlier. Abeysekera, often known as ‘Uncle Percy,’ was an important component of the game in Sri Lanka, serving as a motivator for the players from beyond the boundary line.
He was associated with Sri Lanka’s golden generation and has witnessed the team’s growth since its first World Cup victory in 1996. He was also buddies with several great international players.
‘Uncle Percy’ was visited by India captain Rohit Sharma during the Asia Cup in September. “I was fortunate to meet him in Sri Lanka during the Asia Cup.” He is a huge lover of cricket and, of course, the Sri Lankan team. “He is probably the first genuine fan I’ve ever met, and his support for his team and the players was fantastic to see,” Rohit remarked on Wednesday.
Rohit also recalled the first time he met ‘Uncle Percy’ during his U-19 days. “He was there when I initially went to Sri Lanka for the U19 World Cup in 2005. I was a little lad who had no notion how things worked outside of the cricket pitch. I wasn’t very into it. But I saw him for the first time when I travelled with the Indian team in 2008. I noticed how enthusiastic he was and was fortunate to meet his family, his son and grandchild. They were incredibly nice. “I went with a few of my team members,” Rohit explained.
Sri Lanka Cricket stated in a statement on Thursday that “his towering legacy spans across Sri Lanka’s pre- and post-test eras, and his name will remain etched forever among cricket lovers.”
Several Sri Lankan cricketers, both current and former, have paid tribute to the “super fan.” Virat Kohli had invited him to the visiting team’s dressing room in 2015. The SLC just provided him with LKR 5 million to aid with medical expenditures.