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Former Proteas and Pakistan coach Mickey Arthur is currently favourite to take over the top job in Sri Lanka.

Sri Lanka’s current coach Chandika Hathurusingha has yet to have his contract terminated but the writing is on the wall after a string of poor results.

Hathurusingha took over the job from another South African in Nic Pothas who held the post in an interim capacity having been brought into the technical team by compatriot Graeme Ford as a fielding coach.

Arthur’s achievements with Pakistan have given him the edge over the other frontrunners for the job. The former Australia and Proteas mentor guided Pakistan to the 2017 Champions Trophy and a number one ranking on the ICC’s T20I rankings.

“We are having discussions with Mickey,” Sri Lanka Cricket CEO Ashley de Silva said. 

“We think we will be able to reach an agreement.

“We are having discussions with Mickey,” SLC CEO Ashley de Silva said. “We think we will be able to reach an agreement.”

Arthur’s predecessor a tough man to shift

Hathurusingha has been formally suspended by SLC but they have been unable to terminate the coach’s contract without incurring considerable expense.

The coach made tremendous progress during his time at the helm of Bangladesh’s national team but has failed to achieve the same kind of results with his home nation.

Former quick Rumesh Ratnayake was appointed Sri Lanka’s interim coach ahead of their home Test series against New Zealand in August.

Sri Lanka woes

SLC did not communicate termination of contract to Hathurusingha at the time but have made it clear the board is unhappy with results.

“We’ve been watching the coach’s performance for over a year-and-a-half. Based on that we’ve taken this decision,” SLC President Shammi Silva told reporters in August.

“I was also in the board that recruited Hathurusingha, and we’ve made some mistakes. But if we are to do right by cricket in (the) future, we have to correct those mistakes.” 

Sri Lanka are set to become the first team in a decade to play a Test match in Pakistan and the board are believed to be eager to have Arthur in place before the trip.

If Arthur is given the job he will become Sri Lanka’s 11th head coach since 2011. 

The first Test between Pakistan and Sri Lanka will be played in Rawalpindi from December 11 to 15, while the second Test will be held in Karachi from December 19 to 23.

Sri Lanka were the last team to play a Test in Pakistan on their ill-fated 2009 tour that ended with the shocking attack on their team bus by extremist militants.

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