Lakshan Sandakan, Pathum Nissanka added five-player Sri Lanka to T20 World Cup squad

Lakshan Sandakan, Pathum Nissanka added five-player Sri Lanka to T20 World Cup squad

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Lahiru Madushanka is left out of the original roster after failing to recover in time from a broken collarbone

Pathum Nissanka, Minod Bhanuka, Ashen Bandara, Lakshan Sandakan and Ramesh Mendis have been added to Sri Lanka’s roster for the upcoming T20 World Cup, while Lahiru Madushanka is left out of the original roster after failing to recover in time from the broken collarbone suffered he ran up against South Africa.

The additions bring Sri Lanka’s traveling contingent to 23 players, including four reserves, though they add hardly any weight in terms of international experience. While Sandakan has 20 T20I caps to his name, the other four have only 15 combined. Any of them are also unlikely to make it to the Sri Lanka base, although they do add some much-needed injury coverage.

As such, the inclusion of Sandakan, who was left out of Sri Lanka’s recent home series against South Africa, means there will be four specialist spinners in the squad, joining Wanindu Hasaranga, Maheesh Theekshana and Praveen Jayawickrama.

In the highly regarded Nissanka, Sri Lanka has a potential future star with an impressive domestic record – his century on Test debut in the West Indies only confirmed his status – although he has yet to impress in the shorter formats of the game. That said, he got some promising starts in the recently concluded SLC T20 Invitational, including an unbeaten 76 from 54 balls.

Bandara, meanwhile, was a surprise inclusion in Sri Lanka’s tour of the West Indies earlier this year and is known as a livewire in the field. However, apart from an unbeaten half-century in a lost cause against the West Indies, he hasn’t done much for the national team, having been dropped from the South African series after a modest performance against a weakened India.

Similarly, both Bhanuka and Mendis have failed to impress during the limited appearances they’ve had for the national team.

As Sri Lanka kick off their World Cup campaign with qualifiers against Namibia, Ireland and the Netherlands, they will also play two T20Is against Oman leading up to that, on October 7 and 9. The team will fly to Oman on October 3.

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