Sri Lanka announce 15-member squad for ICC World Cup 2019

Tanya Simon
April 22, 2019

Dimuth Karunaratne (capt), Lasith Malinga, Angelo Mathews, Thisara Perera, Kusal Perera, Dhananjaya de Silva, Kusal Mendis, Isuru Udana, Milinda Siriwardana, Avishka Fernando, Jeevan Mendis, Lahiru Thirimanne, Jeffrey Vandersay, Nuwan Pradeep, Suranga Lakmal.

Siriwardana and Vandersay last played the 50-over format for Lanka in 2017.

Opener Danushka Gunathilaka was also dropped with Lahiru Thirimanne recalled after last playing one-dayers in 2017. "We went with someone who has a bit of experience in that role". One hour earlier of that message, he had a call from the chief selector Ashantha de Mel.

"The openers were not in form". Out of the 14 matches he has captained, we have lost 13 and one is a no-decision.

"We understood that he is able to rally all the strengths in the team", Silva said.

"Since Akila remodelled his action, Dhananjaya gets wickets at a much better strike rate than Akila, and he also turns the ball more than Akila".

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Youngster Avishka Fernando is involved again, despite failing to impress against South Africa last month, while Nuwan Pradeep is also included. But regular wicketkeeper-batsman Niroshan Dickwella was dropped.

Sri Lanka cricket board announced the World Cup team and named Dimuth Karunaratne as their captain. According to de Mel, it was Karunaratne's leadership in the Test series victory in South Africa that prompted the selection committee to remove Lasith Malinga and make the captaincy change. However, the 30-year-old cricketer hasn't played an ODI match since the 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup.

Skipper Karunaratne is a notable Test player and has just 17 ODIs under his belt.

Lasith Malinga spearheads the bowling attack.

Sri Lanka won the ICC World Cup in the year 1996 by defeating Australia in the final. The Country comes first, not the names. Sri Lanka cricket is already going through a lot of turmoil faced another challenge when Malinga shared a message on group.

Malinga and Mathews are considered certainties to keep their places in the squad despite having been kept out of leadership duties.

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