Sri Lanka's ODI Ambitions Undeterred Despite Setbacks

Sri Lanka’s ODI Ambitions Undeterred Despite Setbacks

Sri Lanka’s ODI ambitions remain undeterred despite missing out on the Super League and the Champions Trophy. Head coach Chris Silverwood emphasizes that representing the country is motivation enough for the team, especially against a competitive Bangladesh side.

The rivalry between the two teams intensified during the recent T20I series, with gestures and verbal exchanges adding fuel to the fire. However, Silverwood acknowledges that the rivalry has fostered a healthy competitive edge.

Sri Lanka is in the early stages of a new ODI cycle and has made a promising start with series wins against Zimbabwe and Afghanistan. Silverwood aims to build on this momentum and establish a distinct style of play leading up to the next World Cup.

The return of Pathum Nissanka, who recently became the first Sri Lankan to score an ODI double century, is a major boost for the team. Silverwood praises Nissanka’s exceptional contributions and consistency.

Another player to watch is Kamindu Mendis, who has impressed with his ambidextrous batting and ambitious stroke play. Mendis has seized his opportunities and is now vying for a permanent berth in the team.

Silverwood highlights the importance of individual contributions and the team’s collective effort in putting up big scores and executing their skills effectively.

Sri Lanka Recall Kumara, Include Mendis for Bangladesh ODIs

Sri Lanka Recall Kumara, Include Mendis for Bangladesh ODIs

Sri Lanka’s ODI squad for their upcoming series against Bangladesh features the return of fast bowler Lahiru Kumara and the inclusion of batting allrounder Kamindu Mendis. The team aims to continue its rebuilding process after a disappointing World Cup performance.

Kumara, who has been in good form in domestic cricket, has been recalled to the ODI XI. He has taken nine wickets in his last four List A matches. Mendis, who impressed in the T20Is, has also earned a spot in the squad.

Opening batter Pathum Nissanka, who has recovered from a hamstring injury, and offspin-bowling allrounder Sahan Arachchige, who has been in good form with the bat domestically, are also included in the squad.

Test captain Dhananjaya de Silva remains omitted from the ODI squad, while Shevon Daniel, who was part of Sri Lanka’s last two ODI squads, has been left out in favor of Mendis.

Sri Lanka has a variety of seam options, including Kumara, Pramod Madushan, left-armer Dilshan Madushanka, and all-rounders Chamika Karunaratne and Janth Liyanage. However, they do not have the slingers Matheesha Pathirana or Nuwan Thushara, despite Thushara’s outstanding performance in the third T20I against Bangladesh.

On the spin front, Wanindu Hasaranga and Maheesh Theekshana are expected to be the main bowlers, but Akila Dananjaya and left-arm spinning allrounder Dunith Wellalage are also in the mix.

Sri Lanka has won both their ODI series this year, at home against Zimbabwe and Afghanistan. This is their first overseas series in 2024. The first of three ODIs will be played in Chattogram on Wednesday.

IPL Transforms Cricket Landscape, Fosters Talent and Enhances Competitiveness

IPL Transforms Cricket Landscape, Fosters Talent and Enhances Competitiveness

The Indian Premier League (IPL) has revolutionized the cricketing landscape, not only fostering talent identification but also enhancing the competitiveness of all three formats of the game, according to league chairman Arun Dhumal.

Since its inception in 2008, the IPL has witnessed an explosion in T20 cricket’s popularity. Players like Jasprit Bumrah, Suryakumar Yadav, Hardik Pandya, Yashasvi Jaiswal, and Rinku Singh have earned India caps after impressive performances in the lucrative league.

“The IPL has been phenomenal in identifying new talent,” Dhumal said. “Every season, we see highly skilled youngsters like Yashasvi Jaiswal and Rinku Singh emerge. They have gone on to represent India, demonstrating the IPL’s significance in nurturing young talent.”

The IPL has become the world’s second-richest sports league in terms of per-match value, trailing only the NFL. Dhumal believes the league has positively impacted Test and ODI cricket as well.

“The IPL has become the second most important league globally in the past 15 years,” Dhumal said. “It has significantly altered cricket. We have seen more results in Test matches and increased competitiveness in ODIs.”

“Two decades ago, 250-300 runs were considered a good score in ODIs. Now, we regularly witness scores of 400. The T20 format and the IPL have played a crucial role in this evolution,” he added.

The upcoming IPL season will commence on March 22 and will be held entirely in India despite the coinciding general elections. The schedule will be finalized once the election dates are announced.

“We have released the schedule for the first two weeks,” Dhumal said. “We are awaiting the election commission’s announcement. We will adjust the schedule accordingly and hope to host a significant number of matches in Dharamshala.”

The final Test of the India-England series is currently underway in Ahmedabad. It marks a milestone for Ravichandran Ashwin and Jonny Bairstow, who are playing their 100th Tests.

“This Test is historic,” Dhumal said. “It’s Ashwin’s 100th, Bairstow’s 100th, and Anderson is likely to take his 700th wicket. It also coincides with the anniversary of Sunil Gavaskar scoring 10,000 runs.”

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