Sri Lanka have named an extraordinary World Cup squad, with Dimuth Karunaratne returning as captain having not played an ODI since the last World Cup, while Niroshan Dickwella and Dinesh Chandimal are among the big names to miss out.
Opening batsmen Danushka and Upul Tharanga are also left out, as is spinner Akila Dananjaya.
Karunaratne was named as ODI skipper in place of Lasith Malinga on Wednesday and will now lead the side in England. He was in in charge for the sensational Test series success in South Africa and has a fine record in that format.
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His ODI average, though, is just 15.83 and the 30-year-old hasn’t played in the format since the victory over England at Wellington in March 2015.
Former captains Angelo Mathews and Malinga are in the squad. Chandimal had replaced Mathews as skipper before England’s tour, but was dropped for the defeat in South Africa and does not return.
Dickwella’s axing after a run of low scores in South Africa is a huge shock, with Kusal Mendis and Kusal Perera now set to fight for the wicketkeeping gloves.
Lahiru Thirimanne, Milinda Siriwardana and Jeffrey Vandersay return to the squad after two-year absences, while Jeevan Mendis gets the nod despite – like Karunaratne – not playing an ODI since 2015.
Sri Lanka provisional World Cup squad: Dimuth Karunaratne (capt), Avishka Fernando, Suranga Lakmal, Lasith Malinga, Angelo Mathews, Jeevan Mendis, Kusal Mendis (wk), Kusal Perera (wk), Thisara Perera, Nuwan Pradeep, Dhananjaya de Silva, Milinda Siriwardana, Lahiru Thirimanne, Isuru Udana, Jeffrey Vandersay.
England’s managing director of men’s cricket Ashley Giles has revealed he wants the same coach for all formats.
Eoin Morgan is committed to leading England through to the ICC World Twenty20 World Cup, according to Ashley Giles.
Lancashire beat Middlesex by 104 runs and return to Division One after winning title.
Jofra Archer, Rory Burns and Joe Denly have been handed central contracts by England after their summer performances.
Warwickshire batsman Dominic Sibley delivered another timely reminder that he may be the man for England’s winter tour.
Kyle Abbott claimed Hampshire’s best-ever bowling figures as Somerset’s hopes of winning County Championship title take hefty blow.
Virat Kohli’s guided India to a seven-wicket victory over South Africa to put them one up in the three-game T20 series
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