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World Cup 2011

Vaas, Randiv called up as injury cover for final

ESPNcricinfo staff

March 31, 2011

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Angelo Mathews and Muttiah Muralitharan jump for joy after sealing the victory, Australia v Sri Lanka, 1st ODI, Melbourne, November 3, 2010
Both Muttiah Muralitharan and Angelo Mathews will be tough to replace in the World Cup final © Associated Press
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Injury concerns over Muttiah Muralitharan and Angelo Mathews have forced the Sri Lankan team to call up Chaminda Vaas and Suraj Randiv as standbys ahead of the World Cup final against India on April 2. Vaas and Randiv will reach Mumbai on Thursday evening, and will be available for an emergency swap into the side if necessary, pending approval from the ICC.

Trevor Bayliss, the team's coach, confirmed the development. "They [Mathews and Muralitharan] picked up a couple of niggles in the last match," Bayliss said. "So to be on the safe side a couple of guys are flying in tonight. We will be giving those two guys [Mathews and Muralitharan] as long as possible to prove their fitness."

Muralitharan has struggled with niggles through the course of the tournament, including a hamstring injury, a side strain, a troublesome knee and a groin issue. There was speculation that he would be rested for the semi-final against New Zealand in a bid to allow him time to be fully fit for the final. Muralitharan, however, played in the semi-final in Colombo, despite not being in the best physical condition. The final, if he plays in it, will be Muralitharan's last international game.

Bayliss was confident about Muralitharan's availability for the game. "I think his chances are good," Bayliss said. "He bowled his 10 overs in the semi-final and came through that okay. He is obviously a bit stiff and sore. He has the character and the will to win the World Cup and I will not be surprised if he plays."

Mathews left the field during the semi-final with a minor quadriceps muscle injury when Sri Lanka were fielding, and was visibly hampered for movement when he later came out to bat with a runner. Mathews has played a crucial role in Sri Lanka's campaign, both as a back-up seamer and in the middle order, and his versatility will be tough to substitute.

Left-arm seamer Vaas, 37, last played an last international game in July 2009, and hasn't featured in an ODI since August 2008. He was contemplating retirement following his omission from the original World Cup squad and was understandably amazed at the call-up. "It was a massive surprise for me. I have just been playing domestic cricket," he told ESPNcricinfo.

Offspinner Randiv was a regular member of Sri Lanka's limited-overs' side last year, but missed out on a World Cup spot to Rangana Herath and Ajantha Mendis, who were picked ahead of him as the spinners to support Muralitharan.


Comments: 222 
Posted by Jiteendra on (April 2, 2011, 5:14 GMT)

wow!! what a turn of fortunes for vaas....not selectd in d original squad...he might b playin his dream farewell match today....a wc final....just fantastic...

Posted by Sudu_putha on (April 1, 2011, 11:38 GMT)

Hey.. SL is going to win this...

Sachin is an amazing player, but not a match winner

Posted by hawkeye30 on (April 1, 2011, 10:58 GMT)

This is great. Vaasi has been in awesome form with the bat in the domestic season. Haha watch out India.. Vaasi is bk.. Will miss Angelo but vaasi will be awesome

Posted by faizalsehwag on (April 1, 2011, 9:24 GMT)

TO THE LANKANS...brings all of your key players both recent and retired toooo(rantunga,mahanama,kalu,attappattu,jayasurya,.....etc) includes 15 or 20 players...what so ever INDIA will be the champion..sehwag will thrash your bowlers over the roof with rain of sixes and fours.... we have 7 world class batsman right now also our bowling has improved after first round.... INDIA WORLD CHAMPIONS OF 2011 WC......

Posted by Truth_Sun on (April 1, 2011, 8:40 GMT)

It is surprised why SLC not play Dilhara Fernando who is the only genuine fast bowler with easy action. It will be a big mistake if SL rely on part time slow bowlers like Dilshan and not able to control onslaught of Shewag, Tendulkar, Gambir and Raina in the end.

Posted by padmal on (April 1, 2011, 8:36 GMT)


Posted by   on (April 1, 2011, 8:30 GMT)

Vaas coming back!?! smells like April Fools to me...

Posted by rachits on (April 1, 2011, 8:29 GMT)

@SriramPopuri: LOL!! good one, dude! getting vaas into a WC final just shows the depth (and desperation) of SL cricket. Maybe they can ask samaraweera to get "depressed" like yardu and then they can bring in aravinda!! LOL and lets face it...SL hv been lucky...who did they beat to get here? england n NZ..WOW!! world beaters, u guys...!!!! one decent one day team, pak, and we knw what the result was...! as much as i luv murali, i dnt see this going any other way apart from an india win...plus i wudnt wanna lose the opportunity to see mahela bring out new whines from his excuse bag...!

Posted by Vinoth_Poppeye on (April 1, 2011, 7:20 GMT)

Whatever replacement you people bring in, Sehwag gonna rock and will go away with century... Wait & See the twist in the tale...

Posted by   on (April 1, 2011, 7:04 GMT)

what is wrong with you Pakistan we need cricketers to play final not movie makers and people who love add more than cricket1 We are there to give an end to India's films and drams!

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