Former Sri Lanka seamer Tony Opatha, who represented his side in the 1975 and 1979 World Cup, died from a suspected stroke at the age of 79 on Friday morning in Colombo.According to a report in ESPNcricinfo, the former cricketer was in the hospital for the past several days. Opatha, the domestic stalwart, played five ODIs for Sri Lanka scalping five wickets at an average of 36.00. He also played a year of club cricket in Ireland, and later played in the Netherlands.

Opatha had been among Sri Lanka’s first cricketers to play club cricket in England. His last international match was against India in 1979, where he picked three wickets.
He was among 49 players to be honoured by Sri Lanka Cricket for their services to cricket in 2018.
Meanwhile, the Sri Lanka cricket board has announced that player auction of the Lanka Premier League (LPL) will be held on October 1.

Chris Gayle, Munaf Patel, Daren Sammy, Shahid Afridi, and Shakib Al Hasan are among the 150 international players to go under the hammer for the auction.The inaugural edition of the LPL will take place from November 14 to December 6. The tournament was slated to be held in August but had to be postponed due to the circumstances surrounded by the coronavirus pandemic.

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The 23-match league will be played across three international venues — Rangiri Dambulla International Cricket Stadium, Pallekele International Cricket Stadium and Suriyawewa Mahinda Rajapakse International Cricket Stadium. The LPL launch will be held in Hambantota.
The five teams named after the cities of Colombo, Kandy, Galle, Dambulla, and Jaffna will participate in the League. 

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