Veteran fast bowler Lasith Malinga, who recently retired from ODI cricket, will lead Sri Lanka in the three-match T20I series against New Zealand, beginning on 1 September in Pallekele.
Niroshan Dickwella, the left-handed wicket-keeper batsman, has been named as Malinga’s deputy in the 15-member squad for the home series. Sri Lanka last played a T20I series against South Africa in March this year, when they lost each of their three matches.
Avishka Fernando, who scored his maiden international century at the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2019 and followed it up with a match-winning 82 in the second ODI against Bangladesh, has retained his spot in the shortest format.
Senior all-rounder Thisara Perera is the most notable absentee from the 15-member contingent. All-rounders Angelo Perera, Dhananjaya de Silva and Priyamal Perera, wicket-keeper batsman Sadeera Samarawickrama and bowlers Suranga Lakmal, Jefferey Vandersay, Asitha Fernando and Kamindu Mendis, all of whom had toured South Africa, have been sidelined.
Visitors New Zealand will play a T20 practice match against a Sri Lanka Board President’s XI, followed by the first T20 international.
Full squad: Lasith Malinga (c), Niroshan Dickwella, Avishka Fernando, Kusal Janith Perera, Danushka Gunathilaka, Kusal Mendis, Shehan Jayasuriya, Dasun Shanaka, Wanindu Hasaranga, Akila Dananjaya, Lakshan Sandakan, Isuru Udana, Kasun Rajitha, Lahiru Kumara, Lahiru Madushanka