Sri Lanka is set to kick off 2024 with a cricketing resurgence, eager to put the challenges of the previous year behind. The national team, led by captain Kusal Mendis, is gearing up for a thrilling series against Zimbabwe on home soil.
The squad is a blend of experience and emerging talent, featuring players like Pathum Nissanka, Avishka Fernando, and Dasun Shanaka. In the bowling department, Jeffrey Vandersay and Dushmantha Chameera take the lead, supported by promising bowlers Dunith Wellalage and Pramod Madushan. The spin division hinges on the skills of Akila Dhananjaya and, pending fitness, Wanindu Hasaranga.
Excitingly, the squad introduces fresh faces such as Dilshan Madushanka, Nuwanindu Fernando, and Janith Liyanage, adding depth and variety to the team. The emphasis on a balanced squad reflects Sri Lanka’s determination to deliver a strong performance in the upcoming series.
Off the field, Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) is addressing governance challenges that led to the ICC’s suspension. A cabinet sub-committee, formed by President Ranil Wickremesinghe, aims to curb external influence. The suspension followed attempts by former Sports Minister Roshan Ranasinghe to establish an interim panel, breaching ICC regulations.
President Wickremesinghe promptly took action, reinstating the elected administration led by Shammi Silva. Plans are underway to draft a contemporary sports law, replacing the outdated 1973 statute, to fortify the governance framework and prevent external interference in the cricket board.
Sri Lanka final ODI squad for Zimbabwe series:
Pathum Nissanka, Avishka Fernando, Kusal Mendis (C), Sadeera Samarawickrama, Charith Asalanka, Sahan Arachchige, Dasun Shanaka, Dunith Wellalage, Jeffrey Vandersay, Dushmantha Chameera, Pramod Madushan, Dilshan Madushanka, Nuwanindu Fernando, Janith Liyanage, Maheesh Theekshana, Akila Dhananjaya, Wanindu Hasaranga (Subject to fitness)