COLOMBO (NewsRadio); A 15-member Sri Lanka squad to compete in the 2023 ODI World Cup scheduled to be held in India has been named.
The squad has been approved by the Minister of Sports.
Despite several media claims, Dasun Shanaka has been retained as captain of the side. Due to the extensive lean patch with the bat and the ball, the place of Dasun Shanaka in the squad for the World Cup was in doubt.
Speculations increased after the poor batting show by Sri Lanka in the finals of the Asia Cup against India.
However, the National Selectors following lengthy discussions have decided to retain Shanaka as the captain for the ODI showpiece event which starts on the 5th of October.
Meanwhile, experienced Kusal Mendis has been named as Shanaka’s deputy. Pathum Nissanka, Kusal Janith Perera, Charith Asalanka, Sadeera Samarawickrama and Dimuth Karunaratne have been named as frontline batters along with Mendis.
Karunaratne’s place in the squad was also subject to discussion, especially considering his slow strike rate and his impact in high-scoring games. Certain corners called for the inclusion of Angelo Mathews in place of Dimuth Karunaratne.
Selectors have opted for the Test captain instead of Mathews who had been plagued with injuries in the past few years.
Dhananjaya de Silva, Dunith Wellalage and skipper Shanaka are named as all rounders.
Kasun Rajitha, Matheesha Pathirana and Lahiru Kumara will be given the new ball, although it is unlikely that all three will feature in the same playing XI.
Meanwhile, Wanindu Hasaranga, Maheesh Theekshana and Dilshan Madushanka have also been included in the World Cup squad subject to fitness.
The naming of squad was also delayed due to deliberation and including the trio who are nursing injuries and yet to fully recover.
Wanindu Hasaranga and Maheesh Theekshana have played key roles in the white-ball set up in recent years and they also have experience on Indian decks extensively since the duo has featured in the Indian Premier League tournament.
Meanwhile, Dushan Hemantha and Chamika Karunaratne have been included as travelling reserves for the ODI World Cup.
Sri Lanka, who had to qualify for the tournament, will kick-start the World Cup campaign against South Africa on the 7th of October in Delhi.