Malinga left out of Sri Lankan squad
Thilina Kandamby and Rangana Herath have been recalled into the Sri Lankan side for the upcoming Paktel Cup in Pakistan. Lasith Malinga was the only player to be dropped from the squad that was chosen for the Champions Trophy. The 15-man squad is scheduled to take part in the tri-series tournament along with Pakistan and Zimbabwe, which starts on September 30.
Dilhara Fernando, who has been nursed carefully back to full fitness after a string of back injuries, retains his place in the squad. However, Malinga is likely to be included for the two-Test series that follows the tournament.
Sri Lanka will once again miss Muttiah Muralitharan, who is recovering well from shoulder surgery. Herath, the left-arm spinner, is among three specialist spinners in the squad - Upul Chandana and Kaushal Lokuarachchi, both legspinners, are the other two.
Kandamby will provide an extra middle-order batting option but is unlikely to play unless there are injuries to one of the regular members. Nevertheless, his inclusion ahead of Russel Arnold, who appears to have been ostracised by the new selection panel, was the most controversial choice.
Sri Lanka resumed training on Monday after returning from the Champions Trophy, and are due to leave for Pakistan on Sunday. Their first match of the tournament will be against Pakistan at Karachi on October 6.
Sri Lanka squad
1 Marvan Atapattu (capt), 2 Sanath Jayasuriya, 3 Kumar Sangakkara (wk), 4 Mahela Jayawardene, 5 Tillakaratne Dilshan, 6 Saman Jayantha, 7 Avishka Gunawardene, 8 Farveez Maharoof, 9 Chaminda Vaas, 10 Upul Chandana, 11 Nuwan Zoysa, 12 Dilhara Fernando, 13 Thilina Kandamby, 14 Rangana Herath, 15 Kaushal Lokuarachchi.