(MARCH  2024)
Compiled by Victor Melder


The Cricket Selection Committee of Sri Lanka Cricket has named Niroshan Dickwella as a replacement for Kusal Janith Perera for the Twenty20 International (T20I) Series against Bangladesh, which begins on Monday in Sylhet. Perera, who was included in the T20I Squad, will not take part in the series as he is suffering from a respiratory infection. Perera did not join the team, which left for Bangladesh on Thursday. Dickwella will join the team tomorrow, ahead of the first match, which will be played at the Sylhet International Cricket Stadium in Sylhet. The second and third T20Is on March 6 and 9 will also be played at the same venue (Daily Mirror, 2.3.2024)

The touring Sri Lankans beat Bangladesh by 3 runs to win the first T20 International played at Sylhet International Cricket Stadium. Scores; Sri Lanka – 206/3 in 20 Overs (Samarawickrama 61no, Mendis 59, Asalanka 44no, Hossain 1/32) Bangladesh – 203/8 in 20 Overs (J.Ali 68, Mahmudullah 54, Mathews 2/17, Shanaka 2/36, B. Fernando 2/41) 

Player of the Match: Charith Asalanka (Sri Lanka)

Bangladesh beat the touring Sri Lankans  by 8 wickets  to win the second T20, played at Sylhet International Stadium. Scores:

Sri Lanka – 165/5 in 20 Overs (Kamindu Mendis 37, Kusal Mendis 36, Mathews 32, Sarkar 1/5, Ahmed 1/38)

Bangladesh – 170/2 in 20 Overs (Shanto 53no, Das 36, Hridoy 32, Pathirane 2/28)

Player of the Match: Najmul Hossain Shanto (Bangladesh)    

The touring Sri Lankans beat Bangladesh by 28 runs to win the third and final T20 International played at Sylhet International Cricket Stadium. Scores:

Sri Lanka – 174/7 in 20 Overs (K. Mendis 86, Ahmed 2/22, Hossain 2/35)

Bangladesh – 146 in 19.4 Overs (Hossain 53, Ahmed 31, Thushara 5/20, Hasaranga 2/32)

Player of the Match: Nuwan Thushara (Sri Lanka).

Player of the Series: Kusal Mendis (Sri Lanka)

Sri Lanka won the three match series 2-1

Uncapped off-spinner Nishan Peiris has been called up to the Sri Lanka squad for the two-match Test series against Bangladesh, starting March 22 in Sylhet, Bangladesh. The 26-year-old replaces fast bowler Milan Ratnayake in the squad as the selectors aim to strengthen the spin department by adding an extra spinner. Sri Lanka had only two spinners in the team during their recent match against Afghanistan, opting for five seamers in the 16-man squad. Peiris’ selection follows an outstanding domestic performance, where he claimed 20 wickets in three matches, including two five-wicket hauls for Team Colombo in the National Super League 4-day tournament. Having made his national team debut at 21 in 2018, Peiris stepped in for Akila Dananjaya, who was sidelined due to a suspect action during the third Test against England in Colombo but is yet to earn his Test cap. Also making a comeback to the squad is Lahiru Kumara, who replaces the injured Asitha Fernando in the Test side. Kumara, with 74 wickets in 26 matches, last represented Sri Lanka in March 2023 against England. His addition will bolster Sri Lanka’s seam attack, joining Vishwa Fernando, Kasun Rajitha, and Chamika Gunasekera. Despite Pathum Nissanka’s impressive performances in limited-overs cricket, the opening batsman has been left out of the Test team as the selectors aim to manage his workload ahead of the T20 World Cup. Sri Lanka Test squad: Dhananjaya de Silva (Capt), Kusal Mendis (VC), Dimuth Karunaratne, Nishan Madushka, Angelo Mathews, Dinesh Chandimal, Sadeera Samarawickrama, Ramesh Mendis, Lahiru Kumara, Vishwa Fernando, Kasun Rajitha, Kamindu Mendis, Prabath Jayasuriya, Lahiru Udara, Chamika Gunasekara, Nishan Peiris. (Sunday Times, 10.3.2024)

Sri Lanka Cricket has announced its 16-man squad for the upcoming three-match ODI series against Bangladesh, with two notable changes marking the lineup. Most notably, seamer Lahiru Kumara makes a return to the one-day side after a five-month absence, replacing the injured Asitha Fernando. Kumara’s last appearance for Sri Lanka was at the World Cup last year, where a thigh injury prematurely ended his campaign. Also making a comeback to the squad is the dynamic opener Pathum Nissanka, who recently made headlines with his historic double century against Afghanistan. Nissanka’s impressive performance has earned him a spot in the team, adding depth to the batting lineup. Kamindu Mendis replaces Shevon Daniel in the squad. The squad will be led by Kusal Mendis, with Charith Asalanka as vice-captain. Alongside Nissanka and Mendis, the batting department boasts talents like Avishka Fernando, Sadeera Samarawickrama, and Janith Liyanage, providing a formidable lineup for Sri Lanka. In the bowling department, the team will rely on the likes of Wanindu Hasaranga, Maheesh Theekshana, Pramod Madushan and Dishan Madushanka to deliver crucial breakthroughs. With the return of Kumara, the pace attack gains experience and potency, complementing the spin options provided by Hasarangga, Theekshana, Dunith Wellalage and Akila Dhananjaya. Sri Lanka will play three ODIs starting Wednesday (13) in Chattogram. Sri Lanka ODI squadKusal Mendis(Capt), Charith Asalanka (VC), Pathum Nissanka, Avishka Fernando, Sadeera Samarawickrama, Janith Liyanage, Wanindu Hasaranga, Kamindu Mendis, Dunith Wellalage, Pramod Madushan, Lahiru Kumara, Maheesh Theekshana, Dilshan Madushanka, Akila Dhananjaya, Sahan Arachchige, Chamika Karunaratne. (Sunday Times, 10.3.2024)

 Bangladesh batter Towhid Hridoy was fined 15 per cent of his match fees in the third T20I. Towhid was found to have breached Level 1 of the ICC Code of Conduct during the third T20I against Sri Lanka in Sylhet on Saturday. The incident happened in the fourth over of the Bangladesh innings, when Towhid turned around after being dismissed and remonstrated aggressively and inappropriately with the Sri Lanka players. A scintillating bowling display from Nuwan Thushara (5/20) guided Sri Lanka to a 28-run win in the third T20I. With this, the Lions took the three-game T20I series 2-1. Thushara picked a hat-trick in the game, with Towhid being the second scalp in that feat. This conduct was found to be in breach of Article 2.20 of the ICC Code of Conduct for Players and Player Support Personnel, which relates to displaying conduct that is contrary to the spirit of the game. He was fined 15 per cent of his match fees. In addition, a demerit point has been added to Towhid’s disciplinary record. It was his first offence in a 24-month period. The charges were brought in by on-field umpires Sharfuddoula Saikat and Tanvir Ahmed, third umpire Gazi Sohel and fourth umpire Masudur Rahman. The sanction was proposed by Andy Pycroft of the Emirates ICC Elite Panel of Match Referees. It was admitted by Towhid, so there was no need for a formal hearing. Level 1 breaches carry a minimum penalty of an official reprimand, a maximum penalty of 50 per cent of a player’s match fee, and one or two demerit points. (Daily News, 11.3.2024)

Sports Minister Harin Fernando has approved the 16-member ODI squad for the upcoming three-match series against Bangladesh, commencing tomorrow at the Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium in Chattogram.In light of Asitha Fernando’s injury, Lahiru Kumara has been added to the Sri Lanka ODI squad, while Kamindu Mendis will replace Shevon Daniel. Sri Lanka ODI Squad1. Kusal Mendis – Captai.2. Charith Asalanka – Vice Captain. 3. Pathum Nissanka. 4. Avishka Fernando, 5. Sadeera Samarawickrama, 6. Janith Liyanage, 7. Kamindu Mendis, 8. Sahan Arachchige, 9. Wanindu Hasaranga, 10. Maheesh Theekshana, 11. Dunith Wellalage, 12. Akila Dananjaya, 13. Chamika Karunaratne, 14. Dilshan Madushanka, 15. Pramod Madushan, 16. Lahiru Kumara (Daily Mirror, 13.3.2024)

Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) signed an MOU with the Japan Cricket Association (JCA) to help Japan develop its game through collaborations, exchanges, and also providing expertise pertaining to the game. Under this MOU, Sri Lanka Cricket will help Japan by sending players, teams, coaches and curators to help Japanese cricket. SLC will send teams to play T20 matches in Japan and will also host Japanese cricket teams in Sri Lanka, while opportunities will also be given to their players to train with the LPL squads. The SLC said The MOU was signed between SLC President Shammi Silva and  CEO of the Japan Cricket Association Naoki Alex Miyaji at the SLC headquarters. Deputy Ambassador of Japan to Sri Lanka Kotaro Katsuki, CEO of Sri Lanka Cricket Ashley De Silva and the Goodwill Ambassador of Japan Cricket Development Priyantha Kariyapperuma attended the signing ceremony. Sri Lanka Cricket’s latest move is part of its program to help Associate Member nations of the International Cricket Council. (Daily Mirror, 13.3.2024)

Sri Lanka suffered a huge blow ahead of the three match ODI series against Bangladesh that gets underway today after fast bowler Asitha Fernando had to withdraw with a hamstring injury. The 26-year-old right arm fast bowler has had an impressive start to his brief international career and he picked up the injury during the domestic one-day competition – National Super League (NSL). He did not travel to Bangladesh. While Asitha had been primarily used for Test match cricket, he did make a comeback to the limited overs side during the recent Afghanistan series. His presence will be badly missed during the two match Test series that follows the three ODIs. While Asitha is extremely effective with the new ball it is when the ball gets older and the pitch gets flatter that captains have really started appreciating his presence. He reverse swings the older ball to deadly effect and then uses the short ball cleverly to unsettle the batters. Last time Sri Lanka toured Bangladesh, in May 2022, the second Test was heading for a draw. But captain Dimuth Karunaratne handed the old ball to Asitha and he ripped through the line-up finishing with career best figures of six for 51. The last five wickets fell for just 13 runs as there was a dramatic collapse. Asitha finished with a match bag of ten for 144. Sri Lanka won the second Test by ten wickets and wrapped up the two-match series 1-0. In Asitha’s absence, Lahiru Kumara is expected to replace him. Kumara is the quickest bowler in Sri Lanka but has been injury prone and has let the side down on multiple occasions having walked off the field in middle of a game. Kumara was a late replacement during the last year’s World Cup in India but featured in just two games before being injured again. He hasn’t played a game for Sri Lanka since then. Kumara’s poor fitness standards is said to be the main reason for him being injured so frequently. It is said the new selectors are addressing the issue having given him a final warning. The player is on a short leash with constant monitoring of his skin fold levels. Prolific opening batsman Pathum Nissanka, who missed the T-20 series with a hamstring injury is expected to make a comeback during the ODI leg of the tour. However, he has been overlooked for the Test series. The batsman has a chronic back injury and the selectors seem to be focusing totally on the upcoming World Cup and will only consider Nissanka for Tests after the sport’s showpiece event in Caribbean and United States in June Sri Lanka will play three Tests in England in August. The three match ODI series gets underway today in Chittagong. The Tests will start later this month. By rex Clementine. (Daily Island, 13..3.2024)

Bangladesh beat the touring Sri Lankans  by 6 wickets  to win the first ODI, played at Zahur Ahmed Chowdury Stadium,, Chittogram. Scores:

Sri Lanka – 255 in 48.5 Overs (Liyanage 67, Mendis 59, Nissanka 36, A. Fernando 33, Sakib 3/44, Islam 3/51, Ahmed 3/60)

Bangladesh – 257/4 in 44.4 Overs (Shanto 122no, Rahim 73no, Mahumdullah 37, Madushanka 2/44, Kumara 1/35)

Player of the Match: Najmal Hossan Shanto (Bangladesh) 

The touring Sri Lankans beat Bangladesh  by3 wickets  to win the second ODI, played at Zahur Ahmed Chowdury Stadium,, Chittogram

Bangaladesh – 286/7 in 50 Overs (Hridoy 96no, Sarkar 68, Shanto 40, Hasaranga 4/45, Madushanka 2/30)

Sri Lanka – 287/7 in 47.1 Overs (Nissanka 114, Asalanka 91, Hasaranga 25, Islam 2/48, Ahmed 2/49)

Player of the Match: Pathum Nissanka (Sri Lanka)

Sri Lanka Cricket appointed former Pakistan pace bowler Aaqib Javed as the national team’s ‘fast bowling coach.’ He will work with the national team until the completion of the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup, which is scheduled to be held in the West Indies and USA during June 2024.Javed, apart from a successful international career where he played 163 ODIs and 22 test matches for Pakistan, captured a tally of 236 international wickets. A member of Pakistan’s 1992 World Cup-winning team, Javed has worked for several national teams in different coaching capacities. Among those stints are working as the bowling coach of the Pakistan national team, serving as the coach of the UAE national team, and also working with the Afghanistan national team in a development role. Currently, he is serving as the Director of Cricket Operations and Head Coach of the Lahore Qalandars of the Pakistan Premier League. Aaqib’s role with Sri Lanka Cricket will resume, with immediate effect. (Daily Mirror, 16.3.2024)

Sri Lanka Cricket has named a 17-member squad and Wanindu Hasaranga, who announced his retirement from Test cricket last year, has made a comeback for the ICC World Test Championship series against Bangladesh, commencing on March 22. Also, uncapped off-spinner Nishan Peiris has been called up to the Sri Lanka squad. The 26-year-old replaces fast bowler Milan Ratnayake from the recent Test match against Afghanistan. Hasaranga, the leg-spinning all-rounder joins a formidable spin bowling lineup alongside Prabath Jayasuriya, Ramesh Mendis, and all-rounders Nishan Peiris and Kamindu Mendis. Sri Lanka has added fast bowler Lahiru Kumara to the squad, replacing the injured Asitha Fernando. Kumara, boasting 74 wickets in 26 matches, last represented Sri Lanka in March 2023 against England. His return strengthens Sri Lanka’s seam attack, joining Vishwa Fernando, Kasun Rajitha and Chamika Gunasekera. The team will be led by Dhananjaya de Silva with experienced players such as former skippers Dimuth Karunaratne, Angelo Mathews and Dinesh Chandimal also included in the squad. In their recent performance, Sri Lanka secured victory in the one-off Test match against Afghanistan by 10 wickets with a day to spare.  (Daily Mirror, 18.3.2024)

Minister of Sports and Youth Affairs Harin Fernando approved the 17-member squad selected by the Sri Lanka Cricket Selection Committee to take part in the Test series against Bangladesh. The two match test series will commence on the 22nd March at SICS, Sylhet The Squad:-1. Dhananjaya De Silva – Captain, 2. Kusal Mendis – Vice Captain, 3. Dimuth Karunaratne, 4. Nishan Madushka, 5. Angelo Mathews,  6. Dinesh Chandimal,  7. Sadeera Samarawickrama,  8. Kamindu Mendis, 9. Lahiru Udara, 10. Wanindu Hasaranga, 11. Prabath Jayasuriya, 12. Ramesh Mendis,, 13. Nishan Peiris, 14. Kasun Rajitha, 15. Vishwa Fernando, 16. Lahiru Kumara, 17. Chamika Gunasekara. (Daily Mirror, 18.3.2024)

Less than a day after Sri Lanka announced that Wanidu Hasaranga would be coming out of Test retirement to join the team for a two-match series in Bangladesh, he ended up with a sanction from the ICC that meant he would not be able to take part in the series. Hasaranga was punished for breaching article 2.8 of the player’s code of conduct, which relates to showing dissent against the umpire’s decision. An ICC press release on Tuesday said the incident happened during the 37th over of the third and final ODI against Bangladesh when “he snatched his cap from one of the umpires and ridiculed the umpiring in the match.” He received a fine – 50% of his match fees – and three demerit points, which took his total demerits to eight, and when it hits eight, he is obliged to miss two Tests, four ODIs or four T20Is, whichever comes first. Had Hasaranga not come out of retirement for the Tests, he would have missed Sri Lanka’s first four games at the T20 World Cup. This suspension follows on from a previous one that he received in February when, once again, he was unimpressed by the umpiring. After Sri Lanka lost a close game to Afghanistan, where one of the on-field officials, Lyndon Hannibal, failed to call a potential no-ball in the final over, Hasaranga, who captains the side in the shortest format, rounded on him in the press conference and said that it would be better if he found another job. Sri Lanka ODI captain Kusal Mendis also copped a 50% fine and three demerit points for “abusing the umpires while shaking hands with them” at the end of the third ODI. Both Hasaranga and Mendis admitted their offences and accepted the sanctions proposed by match referee Andy Pycroft. The first of the two Tests against Bangladesh begins on Friday in Sylhet. Sri Lanka’s spin attack was expected to be centered around Hasaranga and Prabath Jayasuriya with Ramesh Mendis for support, but the suspension now brings in Kamindu Mendis, who has only played one Test, and the uncapped Nishan Peiris into the fray. (Cricinfo) (Daily Island, 20.3.2024)

Bangladesh beat the touring Sri Lankans  by 4 wickets  to win the third and final ODI, played at Zahur Ahmed Chowdury Stadium,, Chittogram. Scores:

Sri Lanka – 235 in 50 Overs (Liyanage 101, Asalanka 37, Mendis 29, Ahmed 3/42, Miraz 2/38, Rahman 2/39)

Bangladesh – 237/6 in 40.20 Overs (Hussain 84, Hossani 45no, Rahim 37, Kumara 4/48, Hasaranga 2/64)

Bangladesh won the three-match series 2-1.

Player of the Match: Risahd Hossani Bangladesh)

Player of the Series: Najmul Hossain Shanto (Bangladesh)

The Sri Lanka Cricket announced that, the Former cricketer Anusha Samaranayake has been appointed the new Fast Bowling Coach of the national team. Meanwhile, Hashan Amarathunga was appointed as the Sports Performance Nutritionist and Jonathan Porter as the Physiotherapist of the national cricket team. (Daily News, 22.3.2024)

Sri Lankans are masters at exploiting loopholes and Wanindu Hasaranga de Silva has been a cut above the rest and the worst fear is that his latest distasteful episode where he has made a mockery of the International Cricket Council’s (ICC) code of conduct has sent shock waves among the country’s sporting ambassadors .Entering the bad books of the ICC for a second time in a month by going against an umpire ruling in the third ODI against Bangladesh on Monday, Hasaranga has proved he has become a law unto himself unable to handle new found fame and wealth. Having acknowledged violating the ICC’s code of conduct Hasaranga has snobbishly gone against his own conviction by accepting the charge and then conveying to the sport’s global keeper that he will not serve a relevant T20 four-match ban that became automatic after his black marks or demerit points for misconduct breached the tolerant level. Once the level is breached, according to the ICC’s code of conduct for cricketers, a player will be banned for either two Test matches or four ODI or T20 matches depending whichever comes first. Sri Lanka has no T20 or ODI matches before the T20 World Cup in June this year with only Test cricket lined-up and having retired from the five-day format Hasaranga has re-entered the arena which is nothing but a convenient escape from reality. By re-entering five-day Test cricket after despising and retiring from it last year having played just four matches and taken four wickets, Hasaranga has with the support of his locally blacklisted keeper Sri Lanka Cricket averted the ICC ban by being named in a 17-man squad for the current two-Test series against Bangladesh. It is unusual for Sri Lanka to go beyond the names of 15 players for a Test series and the names of 17 players has made it obvious that SLC has also gone against its global partner the ICC in allowing Hasaranga to sit out two Test matches to overcome the ban. For the record, SLC officials, the team Selectors and its Management that has mastered the art of hoodwinking a section of the media with hollow information, the latest drama surrounding  Hasaranga has further exposed them to public wrath. Hasaranga stands out as the only player that took on SLC and branded it a liar for saying that he was part of a plot for the team’s downfall at the 2023 World Cup. While branding SLC a liar, Hasaranga posted pictures of him recovering from surgery in hospital as the reason for missing the World Cup. (Sunday Observer, 24.3.2024)

The touring Sri Lankans beat Bangladesh by 328 run to win (with a day to spare) the first Test, played at Sylhet International Stadium. Scores:

Sri Lanka, 1st Innings  – 280 (de Silva 102, Mendis 102, Ahemed 3/72, Rana 3/87)

Bangladesh, 1st  Innings – 188 (Islam 47, Das 25, fernando 4/48, Kumara 3/31, Rajitha 3/560

Sri Lanka, 2nd  Innings – 418 (Mendis 164no, de Silva 108, Karunaratne 52, Miraz 4/24, Islam 2/75, Rana 2/128)

Bangladesh, 2nd Innings – 182 (Haque 87, Miraz 33, Rajitha 5/56, Fernando 3/36, Kumara 2/39)

Player of the Match: Dhanjaya de Silva (Sri Lanka)

Test Debut: Nahid Rana (Bangladesh)

Points: Sri Lanka 12, Bangladesh 0.    

Sri Lanka have made a significant move up the latest ICC World Test Championship 2023-25 standings following their resounding victory against Bangladesh. In their first-ever Test assignment at the Sylhet International Cricket Stadium, the Lankan Lions defeated the Bangladesh Tigers by a massive 328-run margin. Skipper Dhananjaya de Silva wanted to make positive approach to go on the Test championship journey and Sri Lanka team did it great style. The outcome resulted in Sri Lanka securing 12 points in three games and a points percentage of 33.33, ahead of South Africa (25 per cent) and England (17.50 per cent), who are currently at the bottom of the table. Bangladesh and Sri Lanka both have the same number of points (12) and points percentage (33.33) at joint-sixth. Pakistan have moved up one spot to No.4 with a 36.66 points percentage, while West Indies, who share a similar points percentage with Sri Lanka and Bangladesh, have moved up to No.5 with a higher points tally of 16. While India take the lead standing on top and Australia standing just behind them at number 2. The Kiwis are at number 3 after being drubbed by Australia at home by 2-0. The first two will play the final of WTC at Lords next year. The positive of the first test is very strong number seven batter Kamindu Mendis while strong fast bowling combination of three pacemen Kasun Rajitha,Lahiru Kumara and Vishwa Fernando. (Daily News, 27.3.2024)

Sri Lanka received a blow ahead of the second Test against Bangladesh as pace bowler Kasun Rajitha is ruled out of the series concluding match, scheduled at the Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium from March 30. Asitha Fernando joined the squad as a replacement for Rajitha while the latter returned home to start rehabilitation work. “Kasun Rajitha will not be available for the second Test match as the player has suffered an injury to his left upper back area,” SLC said in a statement on Wednesday. Rajitha, who grabbed eight wickets in the opening Test against Bangladesh at Sylhet, played a key role behind their win by picking a five-fer in the second innings to help them earn a massive 328-run win. The right-arm medium fast bowler sustained the injury while playing the first Test and played the game by managing his injury. Both the teams reached Chattogram ahead of the second game and will start their preparation from Thursday for the second Test which is part of the ICC Test Championship. (Daily Island, 29.3.2024)


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