SL vs AFG | Bhanuka Rajapaksa granted release from Sri Lanka's 16-member squad for ODI series
Bhanuka Rajapaksa is expected to take part in the Abu Dhabi T10 league|
Sri Lanka have named a 16-member squad for their three-match ODI series against Afghanistan, just a day before the first encounter is scheduled to kick off in Kandy. Bhanuka Rajapaksa, however, has withdrawn his name from the team following the approval of his request to take a break from ODIs.
Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) has announced a list of 16 players that will take part in the upcoming ODI series against Afghanistan beginning November 25, with all three games set to take place at the Pallekele International Cricket Stadium in Kandy. Dasun Shanaka will lead the full-strength team against Hashmatullah Shahidi's men with all eyes on the likes of Wanindu Hasaranga and Maheesh Theekshana amidst questions of whether they can translate their success in T20s to the longer format of the game.
In a further development, however, the SLC stated in their media release that all-rounder Bhanuka Rajapaksa has been granted permission to withdraw from the squad given the 31-year-old's wish to take a break from ODI cricket. Reports state that Rajapaksa, a mainstay for the team at number five in 50-over cricket, would be provided with a No Objection Certificate by the authorities to take part in the ongoing Abu Dhabi T10 League.
The squad is still pending approval from the country's Ministry of Sports and Youth Affairs, thereby arising the scope for further modifications ahead of the first encounter.
Sri Lanka's squad for Afghanistan ODI series: Dasun Shanaka (C), Pathum Nissanka, Dhananjaya de Silva, Charith Asalanka, Dinesh Chandimal, Kusal Mendis, Wanindu Hasaranga, Dunith Wellalage, Dananjaya Lakshan, Kasun Rajitha, Maheesh Theekshana, Pramod Madushan, Asitha Fernando, Ashen Bandara, Lahiru Kumara, Bhanuka Rajapaksa*