Sri Lanka drop Dasun Shanaka for ODI series against Afghanistan

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Former captain Dasun Shanaka has been left out of Sri Lanka’s 16-member ODI squad to face Afghanistan. Shanaka’s is one of three omissions from the squad that was named for the series against Zimbabwe last month.
Shanaka’s removal from the one-day side does not come as a surprise, given his poor form in the format – his last 21 innings, stretching back to January 2023, have brought him just one half-century and an average of 12.25.
He had been removed as white-ball captain ahead of the Zimbabwe series but had retained a place in the playing XI – he was dropped for the third ODI following scores of 8 and 7 in the first two games.

Karunaratne, who will likely be his direct replacement, last played for Sri Lanka at the World Cup in October-November. While he doesn’t possess Shanaka’s ceiling as a power-hitter – attested to by strike rates of 78.43 and 106.20 in ODIs and T20Is respectively – his bowling has proved effective in both white-ball formats.

Both Fernando and Vandersay, however, might have legitimate grievances after being left out. Fernando did not play a single game against Zimbabwe, while Vandersay picked up respectable figures of 2 for 47 in the only game he got to bowl in during that series.

The rest of the squad fills out as expected. Kusal Mendis heads a strong batting unit that includes Pathum Nissanka, Avishka Fernando, Sadeera Samarawickrama, Charith Asalanka, Janith Liyanage – Player of the Series against Zimbabwe – opener Daniel and allrounder Sahan Arachchige.

On the bowling front, Wanindu Hasaranga and Maheesh Theekshana head a spin department that also includes Akila Dananjaya and allrounders Dunith Wellalage and Arachchige. Dushmantha Chameera, Dilshan Madushanka, Pramod Madushan and Karunaratne round out the seam-bowling unit.

Sri Lanka ODI squad: Kusal Mendis (capt.), Charith Asalanka, Pathum Nissanka, Avishka Fernando, Sadeera Samarawickrama, Sahan Arachchige, Shevon Daniel, Janith Liyanage, Chamika Karunaratne, Maheesh Theekshana, Dilshan Madushanka, Dushmantha Chameera, Dunith Wellalage, Pramod Madushan, Akila Dananjaya, Wanindu Hasaranga

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