Mathews: Everything is about the World Cup

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Sri Lanka have played 17 ODIs this year so far, and have 17 more to go before the World Cup in Australasia next year, and skipper Angelo Mathews is determined to use them to full advantage.

Sri Lanka have played 17 ODIs this year so far, and have 17 more to go before the World Cup in Australasia next year, and skipper Angelo Mathews is determined to use them to full advantage.

With Sri Lanka taking on Pakistan in three matches over the next week, Mathews is hoping to use these games, and the ones to follow, to finalise his best team for the World Cup, and won't be shy about rotating his players.

Mathews said: "I'll try and use these 17 one-dayers to try and build up my team for the World Cup. I won't be reluctant to make any changes. I won't be reluctant to experiment things in these ODIs.

"I'll try and keep it simple, but all in all I'll try to look at a good 15 for the World Cup. I'll try and give opportunities to the players we need to look at. But we need to play to win as well.

"It's going to be a tough ask, but we'll try and experiment a few things."

The squad saw the return of Dinesh Chandimal and Suraj Randiv, the latter of whom has not played for the national side since 2011. But Mathews wasn't prepared to say whether they would play, opting to hold out until the first toss.

He said: "Chandimal is in good form, Ashan Priyanjan is in good form, and legspinner Sekkuge Prasanna has also performed well. The idea is that when you get to this 15, everyone should be ready to play.

"I think whoever plays will make the best use of it, but I can't say for sure that Chandimal will play tomorrow. The pitch is a bit damp, so we can't make a decision on our final XI for tomorrow.

"But Suraj has earned his place in the squad. He's performed really well when given opportunities in the side games. He's worked really hard to get here so I wish him all the best."

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