Dickwella, Thisara return to Sri Lanka ODI squad




Fast-bowler Thisara Perera returns to the white-ball setup, while Niroshan Dickwella makes the ODI squad after nearly a year as Sri Lanka announced their 15-member squad for the three-match series against West Indies, which starts on Saturday at the SSC Grounds, Colombo.

 Perera was dropped from the squad last August for the New Zealand T20Is and since then has not featured in any of the Sri Lankan limited-overs teams. He is one of the six players who returns to the squad having withdrawn from the Pakistan series. Dickwella, who has been the premier wicket-keeper batsman for Sri Lanka in Tests, last played ODI cricket in March 2019.

 Dimuth Karunaratne returns to the side as captain for his third assignment in ODI cricket, having led the team in the World Cup and Bangladesh series last year.

 "We are hoping to give opportunities to all the players in the squad. In the Last few months, we have done plenty of work with the new coaching setup. The West Indies team is a very strong side. With some of the seniors returning, they will be a tough team to beat, so we’re looking forward to an exciting series." Karunaratne said during the pre-series press briefing yesterday.

 With Angelo Mathews returning to full fitness, he is expected to fill in some overs along with either Thisara Perera or Dasun Shanaka, who’re both fighting for one place in the playing XI. The hosts are expected to field two frontline wrist spinners in Lakshan Sandakan and Wanindu Hasaranga with Dhananjaya De Silva providing cover.

 Isuru Udana has successfully recovered from the back injury he sustained in India. The all-rounder was forced to miss the third T20I against India in Pune after he picked up the injury during the second game in Indore. Udana will have two more seamers in Nuwan Pradeep or Lahiru Kumara as seam bowling options in the squad.

 However, Danushka Gunathilaka, who cracked a century against Pakistan in Sri Lanka’s last ODI assignment has been ruled out of the side due to a back injury and has been replaced by Shehan Jayasuriya. Avishka Fernando is set to open the batting with captain Dimuth Karunaratne.

Sri Lanka ODI Squad

 Dimuth Karunaratne (Captain ), Kusal Perera, Avishka Fernando, Niroshan Dickwella, Angelo Mathews, Kusal Mendis, Dhananjaya De Silva, Shehan Jayasuriya, Wanindu Hasaranga, Dasun Shanaka, Thisara Perera, Lakshan Sandakan, Nuwan Pradeep, Isuru Udana, Lahiru Kumara


 1st ODI – 22 February – SSC

2nd ODI – 26 February – Hambantota

3rd ODI – 01 March – Pallekele

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