Cricket legend Mahela Jayawardena served two successful terms as national captain of the Sri Lanka Cricket Team and was widely considered to be one of the shrewdest cricket tacticians in the world. Aside from being a captain, Jayawardena holds a long list of Sri Lankan batting records including the most runs in Test cricket, the highest score in Test cricket and a world record with Kumar Sangakkara for the highest partnership in the history of first-class cricket. He has been the recipient of multiple awards for his performance throughout the years, including the ICC Spirit of Cricket Award 2013.
Since retiring from playing cricket, he has embarked on a successful coaching career and he is currently the Head Coach of the Mumbai Indians.
Travelling the world during his many cricket tours exposed Mahela to diverse culinary experiences and opportunities to meet restaurateurs which cultivated his interest in food culture. Being a loyal customer and close friend of Nihonbashi led to a friendship with Dharshan Munidasa who shared his vision for the development of Sri Lanka’s culinary horizons.
When Dharshan put forth the idea for a restaurant dedicated to Seafood, Mahela stepped in to partner with him, giving flight to his own gastronomic ideals. As Chairman of Ministry of Crab, he was actively involved in the project from inception and was keen to ensure that his personal favourite dish, Chicken Curry Rice was added to the menu, making it one of the few non-seafood dishes on the menu and a hit amongst many diners.
In 2018, Mahela together with Kumar Sangakkara and Dharshan Munidasa opened Next Innings in Colombo, a sports lounge featuring 14ft Video Walls and surround 75”screens.
As a personality, Mahela is greatly loved for his humility and humanity. He has been a committed fundraiser for various cancer projects around the world and he’s also a trustee of the Foundation of Goodness.