The 2023 Asia Cup, jointly hosted by Sri Lanka and Pakistan, has been treating fans to captivating cricketing action. In a heartwarming gesture, Indian skipper Rohit Sharma made a special visit to the home of a Sri Lankan fan, Percy Abeysekera, in Ekala, following a request from another Sri Lankan cricket enthusiast, Gayan Senanayaka. This touching moment quickly went viral on social media, with fans across the world applauding Rohit Sharma’s generosity.
In the viral video, Rohit engaged in conversation with Percy, discussing the highly anticipated India vs. Pakistan Super Four match scheduled for September 10 at Colombo’s R. Premadasa Stadium. He also reminisced about the previous drawn game between India and Pakistan in Pallekele, expressing how much Percy’s presence was missed.
Percy Abeysekera, affectionately known as ‘Uncle Percy’ by his fellow Sri Lankans, has been a steadfast supporter of the Sri Lankan cricket team since their first Test against England in 1982. During that historic match, he walked onto the pitch at the P Sara Oval in Colombo, proudly holding a Sri Lankan flag while escorting England batsman Chris Tavare.
Since that moment, Sri Lanka’s cricket authorities have consistently allowed him onto the field to accompany the team after every game, regardless of the result. Despite being invited to join the Sri Lankan cricket board on two occasions, Percy declined the offer, citing his preference for simply being a passionate fan rather than engaging in cricket administration.
Indian captain @ImRo45 has Visited Sri Lankan Cricket Supporter Mr. Percy Abeysekera at His Residence in Ekala.
— DANUSHKA ARAVINDA (@DanuskaAravinda) September 8, 2023
Percy’s love for cricket dates back to when he witnessed his first international match at the age of 12, a game between Australia and All Ceylon in 1948 at Colombo’s Oval (Sara Stadium). During that match, he had the privilege of watching the legendary Sir Donald Bradman in action, sparking his passion for cheerleading, which he continued into the 1950s.
Remarkably, Percy’s grandsons are named Garfield and Sachinka, paying tribute to two cricketing legends: West Indies all-rounder Sir Garfield Sobers and Indian batting maestro Sachin Tendulkar.
As the Asia Cup unfolds, Sri Lanka is set to continue its campaign with the first Super Four fixture against Bangladesh on Saturday, September 09, at Colombo’s R. Premadasa Stadium.