LONDON : Players at a lowly amateur English cricket club were bowled over when Aravinda de Silva turned out for the opposition and demolished them with ease, newspapers reported.
The former Sri Lanka captain and 1996 World Cup winner stunned Wimborne and Colehill cricketers by marching out for Sherborne in the Premier division of the Dorset Cricket League.
And even members of the Sherborne team were hit for six when the Test hero, a friend of one of the players, showed up in the car park.
The retired 1996 Wisden cricketer of the year dusted off his right-arm offbreak skills, taking two wickets for four runs as the hosts were skittled out for 77 runs.
De Silva, 41, hit a six and three fours in his innings of 39 not out as Sherborne cruised to a seven-wicket victory.
"He was the ringer of all ringers," said Sherborne captain Andrew Nurton, according to The Times.
"One of our players, Steve Page, is a friend of his and he kept on promising to bring him along but we never believed him.
"We registered him with the league but we were amazed when Steve pulled up in the car park and Aravinda got out of the car."
Right-handed batsman De Silva scored 6,361 runs in 93 Tests for Sri Lanka. The former Auckland and Kent cricketer hit a match-winning century in the 1996 World Cup final.
"His bat seemed three feet (a metre) wide," said John Rideout, the Wimborne and Colehill chairman.
"Our players were pleased to be playing against someone of that class but I think they would much rather have won the game and not played against him at all."