Wanindu Hasaranga’s World Cup Dream Shattered by Hamstring Injury; Sri Lanka Announces Squad
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Wanindu Hasaranga’s World Cup Dream Shattered by Hamstring Injury; Sri Lanka Announces Squad

Sri Lanka has unveiled its 15-member squad for the upcoming ICC World Cup, with Dasun Shanaka leading the team and Kusal Mendis serving as his deputy. However, the major setback for the Sri Lankan camp is the absence of their star spinner, Wanindu Hasaranga, who has been sidelined due to a hamstring injury.

Injury Sidelines Star Spinner Hasaranga

Wanindu Hasaranga, the talented leg-spinner, sustained a thigh strain during the playoffs of the Lankan Premier League last month. Despite his remarkable performance in the tournament, where he finished as both the top run-scorer with 279 runs and the leading wicket-taker with 19 wickets, the injury ruled him out of the Asia Cup.

Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) initially expressed its commitment to ensuring Hasaranga’s participation, but they also acknowledged the possibility of him missing cricket for at least three months if surgery were required. Hasaranga played a crucial role in Sri Lanka’s victory in the World Cup Qualifiers, where he topped the wicket-takers chart with an impressive 22 wickets in just seven games.

Mixed Fortunes for Sri Lankan Pacers

While Hasaranga’s absence is a significant blow, Sri Lanka’s pace department has its own challenges. Dushmantha Chameera, dealing with a shoulder injury, did not recover in time to make the World Cup squad. However, there’s some good news with Dilshan Madushanka and Lahiru Kumara returning after missing the Asia Cup.

Madushanka had suffered an oblique muscle tear before the Asia Cup, while Kumara was sidelined due to a recurring side strain.

Balanced Squad Despite Injuries

Despite the setbacks, Sri Lanka is fielding a fairly balanced squad for the World Cup. The top-order features Pathum Nissanka, Dimuth Karunaratne, and Kusal Mendis. The middle-order boasts Sadeera Samarawickrama, Kusal Perera, Charith Asalanka, and Dhananjaya de Silva.

The team is also well-equipped with all-rounders, including skipper Dasun Shanaka, Dhananjaya, Dunith Wellalage, and Asalanka. The pace department includes Kasun Rajitha, Dilshan Madushanka, Lahiru Kumara, and rising star Matheesha Pathirana. Leading the spin attack is Maheesh Theekshana, with support from Wellalage, Dhananjaya, and others.

While injuries have disrupted their preparations, Sri Lanka remains optimistic about its chances in the upcoming ICC World Cup.

Sri Lanka Squad for the World Cup: Dasun Shanaka (c), Kusal Mendis (vc), Kusal Perera, Pathum Nissanka, Dimuth Karunaratne, Sadeera Samarawickrama, Charith Asalanka, Dhananjaya de Silva, Dushan Hemantha, Maheesh Theekshana, Dunith Wellalage, Kasun Rajitha, Matheesha Pathirana, Lahiru Kumara, Dilshan Madushanka

Travelling reserve: Chamika Karunaratne

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