Sri Lanka alternative World Cup squad (big names who missed out included)

  1. Danushka Gunathilaka
  2. Upul Tharanga
  3. Niroshan Dickwella (wk)
  4. Oshada Fernando
  5. Dinesh Chandimal (C)
  6. Asela Gunaratne
  7. Dasun Shanaka
  8. Akila Dananjaya
  9. Dhammika Prasad
  10. Dushmantha Chameera
  11. Kasun Rajitha
  12. Kamindu Mendis
  13. Wanindu Hasaranga
  14. Lahiru Kumara
  15. Chamika Karunaratne

For the above squad, I only considered players who have debuted in international cricket but unlucky to miss out on the world cup squad due to injuries or lack of form.  Couple of emerging players are also included.

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  1. Is there any purpose of wasting your / our time on proposing / reading this kind of alternative teams at this moment? We have a team appointed and our chief selector has explained very clearly the reasons behind selecting the squad and reasons why some senior players were rejected. I totally agree with his explanations given.

    Big bouquet to De Mel and his team of selectors for their great effort. Hit Wkt, may be you can propose the above team as a Development Squad but not for the WC.

    When you think about the very tough requirements in this WC the above team can be defined as something like a “Sinking Ship”. I will explain some of the mistakes in the above team.

    Tharanga & Dickwella instead of playing in the WC should go back to an elementary cricket school to learn how to play as openers. They both are making many silly mistakes in spite of correcting them in many opportunities that were given to them. In other countries they wouldn’t have got this much of chances (recently or during last 12 months) like this and would have rejected much earlier. They are lucky to play so many matches in the recent past instead of their failures.

    Chandimal was another failure (when you compare with the tough WC requirements) in the recent past. He cannot show a decent batting average & a SR required for a upper middle order batsman. Go to Cricinfo Statguru and see the following ODI records of Chandimal during the last two yrs.

    M 21 / Inn 18 / Runs 400 / Average 23.5 / SR 66 / 4s 24 (R4 only 29%) only one fifty in the last 21matches.

    I may have to blame the selectors for allowing Chandimal to play in our ODI team during the last 2 yrs when having such a pathetic record in his recent performances. If he bats at no 3 or 4 the scoring rate will go to hell. Playing too many dot balls before settling down, very low rate of boundaries (R4 of 29% when other top order batters are scoring 35% to 45% in boundaries). The worse thing is his very very low SR of 65 – 75%. For this WC except one batsman all the top 6 batters must score quick runs at a recommended SR of 90% min. For generations, Chandimal will not be able to go even closer to that SR. I think the selectors made the mistake by appointing him as the captain. It made things worse for him. He didnt want to improve his game. As de Mel said Chandimal doesn’t have any place in the team (according to his above poor records),and if he does that he has to remove more deserved players like Thirimanna, two Kusals, Mathews and even Dhananjaya from the team.

    Why are you including injured players in your team (Dasun, Lahiru Kumara & Asela) ?

    For Akila’s rejection De Mel gave very clear explanation. I also first thought Akila should be in the team. But after recent remolding his action he has become ineffective. Dhananjaya is now getting more wickets and bowling better than Akila. De Mel also said Dhanajaya turns the ball more than Akila. They have even checked the angle of turn (Dhananjaya – 8 degrees and Akila – 6 degrees)

    Kamindu and Hasaranga are really good but they need more international exposure. Anyway Hasaranga has been selected as standby for the WC.

  2. @susantha-j : I didn’t mean that above players should have been in the world cup squad in the place of players who were picked by the selection committee. Most of above players are unlucky to miss the world cup due to lack of recent form or injuries although they have the potential. After announcing their world cup squads even Australia and India named few players who were unlucky to miss world cup squad.

  3. @susantha-j Obviously selectors have to justify their selections but we don’t have to believe everything they say. The same selection committee picked players like Priyamal Perera, Oshada Fernando, Angelo Perera for South Africa ODIs without even considering Lahiru Thirimanne, Dimuth Karunaratne, Milinda Siriwardane, Suranga Lakmal for the ODIs, although all of them were in South Africa at the time the ODI squad was announced. Now all of them are in the world cup squad considering performance in a provincial tournament.

    I’m not a big fan of Chandimal but De Mel had picked Chandimal ahead of Thirimanne for the world cup ( in an interview) even about a week before announcing the world cup squad. Now he says that scoring heavily at the last cup cup was also a reason for the inclusion of Thirimanne, but I don’t understand why Thirimanne was not picked at least for a single ODI in South Africa recently if the selectors knew he was that good. Unless for Thirimanne’s century in his last provincial match, Chandimal would have been selected ahead of Thirimanne and De Mel would have given a completely different justification for that inclusion like Chandimal can be a backup wicket keeper, we need an experienced player who can also bat at no 3, he scored a 22-ball half century against Australia at the last word cup etc

    If Danuska, Tharanga, Dickwella ,Oshada , Akila , Chameera were picked there would have been justifications as follows.

    # Danuska – Performed well in ODIs in NZ, Can bowl, explosive batsman
    # Tharanga- Has a lot of WC experience, has the highest ODI batting average in England, highest run scorer in SL in ODIs in 2017
    #nDickwella – Has been our regular wicket keeper and an explosive batsman, batted well in Australia and NZ, batted well in test matches in South Africa
    # Oshada – Batted superbly during the provincial tournament prior to SA tour. batted well in SA tests, batted decently in SA ODIs
    # Akila – Has been our best ODI spinner prior to modifying bowling action, took 5 wickets in a provincial match, can be a handy lower-order batsman
    # Chameera – Can bowl at 140+ , An excellent fielder

    One thing that didn’t impress me about what De Mel mentioned was that he asked Dimuth if Dimuth needed some changes in the squad that the selection committee had chosen. I don’t know if any changes were made due to Dimuth’s request but I think it’s not appropriate to ask Dimuth to exclude or include the players chosen by the selectors, since Dimuth wasn’t a part of our ODI team for more than 4 years.

  4. *Now he says that scoring heavily at the last world cup was also a reason for the inclusion of Thirimanne, but I don’t understand why Thirimanne was not picked at least for a single ODI in South Africa recently if the selectors knew he was that good.