Sri Lanka announced their T20I squad for the upcoming tour to India, which will start from February 24 in Lucknow. The remaining two matches will be played in Dharamshala on February 26 and 27.
Off-spinner Ashian Daniel is the only new face named in the 18-member squad, while Avishka Fernando, seamer Nuwan Thushara and spinner Ramesh Mendis won’t be taking part due to injuries, which they sustained in Australia.
The Lankan unit will be led by all-rounder Dasun Shanaka.
Sri Lanka will enter the contest on the back of a crushing 1-4 T20I series loss against Australia but will look to draw inspiration from their final match of the tour, which they won by five wickets.
Meanwhile, there was be no room for middle-order batter Bhanuka Rajapaksa, who has again been ignored owing to fitness issues, even though his performance has been decent.
Daniel has been rewarded for his excellent List A form. Daniel’s inclusion is, however, subject to ministerial approval, a release by the Sri Lanka Cricket Board read.
The team also boasts of Pathum Nissanka, who was the most successful batter in Australia, scoring 184 runs. Shanaka made 116 runs in the five T20s in Australia.
Dushmantha Chameera took seven wickets in Australia and will continue to lead the pace bowling attack for the Lankans. Maheesh Theekshana (5) and Wanindu Hasaranga (5) were the most successful bowlers during the tour Down Under.
Hasaranga was picked for a whopping 10.75 crore by Royal Challengers Bangalore in the recent IPL auction, while Theekshana was picked up by Chennai Super Kings for ₹70 lakh and the duo will be expected to play key roles for the Lankans in India.
Sri Lankan T20 Squad vs India: Dasun Shanaka (C), Pathum Nissanka, Kusal Mendis, Charith Asalanka (VC), Dinesh Chandimal, Danushka Gunathilaka, Kamil Mishara, Janith Liyanage, Wanindu Hasaranga, Chamika Karunaratne, Dushmantha Chameera, Lahiru Kumara, Binura Fernando, Shiran Fernando, Maheesh Theekshana, Jeffrey Vandersay, Praveen Jayawickrama, Ashian Daniel (subject to ministerial approval)
-with PTI inputs