Opening batsman Danushka Gunathilika, allrounder Dasun Shanaka, Lahiru Madushanka, wicket keeper batsman Niroshan Dickwella and spinners Akila Dananjaya, Amila Aponso all have been included into Sri Lanka’s 22 members preliminary squad for three match ODI series against touring Bangladesh starting later this month.
All the players were not part of Sri Lanka’s World Cup campaign, where team won three, lost four matches at the World Cup, with two abandoned due to rain and were knocked out from the first round.
Gunathilika, an explosive opener, was in Sri Lanka’s head coach Chandika Hathurasingha’s scheme of things but performed poorly leading to the showpiece event. His bellow par performance in the provincial tournament before the World Cup forced Asantha De Mel led selection committee to look towards dynamic Kusal Perera! Eventually, Kusal opened the innings with Dimuth Karunaratne and both they laid solid platform in almost every match.
Both Dasun Shanaka and Akila Dananjaya toured India with Sri Lanka A team and produced opposite results.
Akila, who was mysteriously overlooked for World Cup in order to accommodate high profile allrounder allrounder Jeevan Mendis into the squad, took 3 wickets in last match against India A in Hubli.
Dasun Shanaka, meanwhile, had an ordinary India tour with three below par scores of 30, 20 and 44.
Amila Aponso, on the other hand, toured South Africa with Sri Lanka emerging team and took 10 wickets in the triangular series.
Bangladesh will become the first team to tour Sri Lanka since the deadly Easter attacks in which 258 people were killed.
The teams will play three one-day internationals on July 26, 28 and 31 at the Premadasa International Stadium in Colombo.
Kusal Janith Perera
Dhanajaya de silva