Born on June 30, 1969 at Matara in Sri Lanka.
Left-handed attacking opening batsman and left arm spinner.
Jayasuriya made his test debut for Sri Lanka in the1990-91 season at Hamilton against New Zealand and his one-day international debut in the World Series of 1989-90, against Australia at Melbourne.
Jayasuriya, who took over the Sri Lankan captaincy after some poor performances in the World Cup of '99, has played 80 tests scoring 5049 runs at an average of 41.38 and a highest of 340. He has also claimed 69 wickets at 33.98 apiece. In 307 one-day internationals, he has scored 9,126 runs at an average of 31.79 with 16 hundreds and claimed 251 wickets at 36.03 apiece and best bowling figures of 6-29. (Stats updated till end of June 2003).
He made the 1996 World Cup his own by playing some swashbuckling knocks, thus helping Sri Lanka amass huge totals. His audacious and innovative strokes, especially the slash over third man early in the innings, with the field restrictions helping him, has left many a star bowlers' figures in tatters. He then comes back with his flat-trajectory, left arm spin and ties the batsmen in knots. His outstanding fielding, in addition to his batting and bowling abilities, has made Jayasuriya indispensable to the Sri Lankan side.
He leads Sri Lanka imaginatively and from the front, and his genial nature has helped him get senior players like Ranatunga and Aravinda Da Silva give a hundred percent to the team. His handling of Muralitharan has been exemplary. Though the Sri Lankan team is no longer as dangerous as they were in the 1996 World Cup, they can throw a surprise here and there when Jayasuriya is in his element.