The final 15 in the Sri Lanka squad for the World Cup are as under:
Sangakkara, Dilshan, Tharanga, Mahela Jayawardene, Samaraweera, Chamara Silva, Mathews, Kapugedera, Kulasekara, Perera, Muralitharan, Herath, Randiv, Mendis, Fernando
Note: No Jayasuriya, no Vaas
Sri Lanka’s preliminary squad for the ICC World Cup 2011: Kumar Sangakkara, Tillakaratne Dilshan, Upul Tharanga, Dinesh Chandimal, Tharanga Paranavitana, Lahiru Thirimanne, Sanath Jayasuriya, Mahela Jayawardene, Thilan Samaraweera, Thilina Kandamby, Chamara Silva, Chamara Kapugedera, Angelo Mathews, Thisara Perera, Farveez Maharoof, Jeevan Mendis, Muttiah Muralitharan, Suraj Randiv, Rangana Herath, Malinga Bandara, Lasith Malinga, Ajantha Mendis, Nuwan Kulasekara, Dilhara Fernando, Suranga Lakmal, Dammika Prasad, Chaminda Vaas, Chanaka Welegedara, Nuwan Pradeep, Thilan Thushara
This list will be reduced to 15 by January 19
The following article was published by us in July:
Being co-hosts to the event along with India and Bangladesh, Sri Lanka must surely fancy their chances at the ICC World Cup 2011.
Sri Lanka are past champions, winning in 1996. That tournament was also held on the sub-continent.
Not only are their batsmen familiar with the conditions, but they also have the bowlers to make the difference on the slow pitches that don’t offer the bounce of a South African wicket, or the seam movement of an English one, on a cloudy summer day.
So here’s my list of 14 players who I think will turn out for Sri Lanka at the 2011 event:
Dilshan, Tharanga, Sangakkara, Mahela Jayawardene, Samaraweera, Kapudegera, Mathew, Muralitharan, Malinga, Randiv, Welegedera, Thusara, Fernando and Mendis.
Any surprises? Jayasuriya is missing. I would still have opted for the old war horse if he had retained some penetration as a bowler. But sad to say, is he is past his sell by date.
Too many spinners? Maybe. But Herath is still missing. I opted for Randiv in his place on the back of the latter’s good showing on an unhelpful pitch in the second test against India.
Let’s see how many men can use the new ball. Malinga, Mathew, Fernando, Welegedera and Thusara. If you consider Mathew an allrounder, you will need at least two other fast men in the first eleven.
Also you would need at least two back ups to provide for possible injuries to seamers.
I have not opted for a second keeper. Prasanna Jayawadene will not make it into this team on the strength of his batting alone. That is the criterion I would apply for a second keeper.
So which players will Sri Lanka omit from the first eleven?
They will probably play an all rounder along with four bowlers. The six batsmen select themselves. Of the bowlers, Malinga and Murali are certainties.
Going for another seamer and a spinner, I would opt for Tushara over the other seamers for his batting ability, and in a toss up between Randiv and Mendis, my choice is Mendis. Though there is a case for an additional batting option in Kandamby.
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Jinxatious is the Chief Editor of SportingAttitude.com
An avid writer, on an eclectic range of subjects, he brings to bear editorial experience garnered with a national newspaper in South-East Asia. He also has sportscasting experience, as a cricket commentator, and his passion for sport extends beyond Cricket, to Football, Tennis, and Olympic Sports.