Fernando, Karunaratne, Madushanka return for India ODIs & T20Is

Sri Lanka Tour of India 2023

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The Sri Lanka Cricket Selection Committee has named a 20-member squad to take part in the upcoming white-ball series against India.

Sri Lanka’s white-ball Skipper Dasun Shanaka will lead both the ODI and T20I teams as usual, while Kusal Mendis has been named as his deputy in ODIs. Sri Lanka’s ace spinner Wanindu Hasaranga has also been given leadership responsibility for the first time, as he will take up the role of Vice Captaincy in Sri Lanka’s T20I squad.

Read : Schedule announced for Sri Lanka tour of India 2023

The opening batter Avishka Fernando and fast bowlers Pramod Madushan and Dilshan Madushanka have returned to the Sri Lanka squad after injury layoffs. Fernando, who underwent a knee surgery due to an injury he suffered in February this year, returns to international Cricket after almost an year. He was in great touch in the recently concluded Lanka Premier League, where he finished as the highest run-getter of the tournament by scoring 339 runs in 10 matches at 37.66, with a strike rate of 124.63.

The seaming all-rounder Chamika Karunaratne, who was dropped from Afghanistan ODIs due to his poor outings in the recently concluded T20I World Cup, has been included in this squad following his impressive performances with both bat and ball during the 3rd edition of Lanka Premier League. He played some vital cameos, batting down the order for Kandy Falcons with an impressive strike rate of 162.68, while picking up 7 wickets in 10 matches with the ball.

Meanwhile, uncapped batter Nuwanidu Fernando has earned his maiden ODI call-up. Fernando has been on the fringes of the national T20I setup, but is yet to make his debut for Sri Lanka. The speedster Nuwan Thushara has returned to the Sri Lanka T20I side following his impressive outings for Galle Gladiators in the LPL. He picked up 14 wickets in 9 matches at 18.00 with an economy rate of 7.44, finishing as the 2nd highest wicket-taker of the tournament.

The wicket-keeper batter Sadeera Samarawickrama has been included in both ODI and T20I sides following his impressive performances in the recently concluded LPL. He was adjudged the player of the tournament in LPL for his batting heroics, where he managed to accumulate 294 runs in 9 matches at 58.80 with a strike rate of 131.25.

Samarawickrama will replace the senior wicket-keeper batter Dinesh Chandimal in the squad. Chandimal made only 47 runs in the 3 innings during the Afghanistan ODI series, but has contributed immensely with the bat for Colombo Stars in the just concluded LPL, as he amassed 287 runs in 11 matches at 31.88 with a strike rate of 126.99.

Read More : Lanka Premier League 2022 – Team of the Tournament

The dashing left-hander Bhanuka Rajapaksa will only feature in the T20 leg of the series as he has opted out from ODI Cricket. The 19-year old spin all-rounder Dunith Wellalage, who made heroics with the bat in the last ODI against Afghanistan, helping Sri Lanka snatch a series leveling win, has been named in both the ODI and T20I sides.

Sri Lanka ODI & T20I Squad for India Series

Pathum Nissanka, Kusal Mendis (WK), Dhananjaya de Silva, Charith Asalanka, Dasun Shanaka (C), Bhanuka Rajapaksa (T20I), Ashen Bandara, Avishka Fernando, Nuwanidu Fernando (ODI), Sadeera Samarawickrama (WK), Chamika Karunaratne, Dunith Wellalage, Wanindu Hasaranga, Maheesh Theekshana, Jeffrey Vandersay (ODI), Kasun Rajitha, Dilshan Madushanka, Pramod Madushan, Lahiru Kumara, Nuwan Thushara (T20I)

The tour will consist of 3 ODIs and 3 T20Is, which will be played at 6 different venues in India. The T20I series will be played from 03rd to 07th January, while the ODI leg of the tour will be played from 10th to 15th January