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Dasun Shanaka to continue as Sri Lanka captain for World Cup: Reports

Last updated on 21 Sep 2023 | 06:37 AM
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Dasun Shanaka to continue as Sri Lanka captain for World Cup: Reports

According to reports, Kusal Mendis was set to take over, but the selectors took a U-turn at the last minute

Sri Lankan selectors have decided to let Dasun Shanaka continue as captain despite earlier indicating that they would be willing to move on from him ahead of the World Cup. Kusal Mendis, who is Shanaka's deputy, was set to take charge. According to reports, Shanaka was willing to make way for a new leader to take over, but the selectors had a change of heart and have allowed not to sack Shanaka ahead of the marquee event.

Shanaka-led Sri Lanka were recently bowled out for just 50 in the Asia Cup final, and that is what is believed to have been the main reason behind the change. This despite the all-rounder leading his country to 13 consecutive ODI wins, which is the second-best streak in the format after Australia, who had won 21 in a row. Their winning run finally came to an end at the hands of India in the group stages of the Asia Cup.

Shanaka's form with both bat and ball, too, were deemed to be not up to the mark. He last scored over 50 in an innings in January this year, when he made an unbeaten 108 against India in Guwahati. Since then, he has gone past 30 just once in 17 innings - 11 out of those being single-digit scores. His returns with the ball have not been all that bad. He has picked up at least one wicket in the last eight of the 10 innings, including a career-best of 3 for 28 against Bangladesh in the Asia Cup.

Shanaka had led Sri Lanka to the Asia Cup title last year, pipping Pakistan in the final in the T20I format.

Sri Lanka begin their 2023 World Cup campaign against South Africa in Delhi on October 7. However, they will play a couple of matches ahead of the mega event - against Bangladesh on September 29 and Afghanistan on October 3 - both at Guwahati.

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