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Malinga, Mathews back for Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka put their faith in return to fitness of stars as they name squad for the Champions Trophy tournament

Angelo Mathews is back as skipper and Lasith Malinga makes his return after nearly a two-year absence as Sri Lanka release their one-day squad for the Champions Trophy tournament.

Mathews will resume the captaincy after missing the ODI series against South Africa, the tour of Australia and the home series against Bangladesh.

Sri Lanka Cricket on Monday announced a 15-member squad led by Mathews, who cut short his tour of South Africa after twisting his ankle in January.

"I am 100 per cent fit now and I also hope to be able to bowl," said the allrounder who will turn 30 on June 2, a day after the ODI tournament begins in England.

He said he was "very happy" with the squad chosen for the tournament and hopeful of making a good impression.

"I have got the best squad." he said. "We can do well with this team. I am very happy. I have a lot of confidence. We have an opportunity to bring an ICC trophy to Sri Lanka."

Malinga's latest hat-trick, against Bangladesh

Malinga is another that has been beset by injury worries in recent years, but made his return to the international fold in February in T20 matches against Australia. He took a wicket in the warm-up game against the Prime Minister's XI in his very first over.

Malinga sizzles with first-over wicket

Chief selector Sanath Jayasuriya said Malinga was also being included in the squad after nearly two years and was fully fit to play in England.

"All the other players will be able to benefit from Malinga's experience," Jayasuriya said.

"He has said in writing that he is fully fit to play."

The Sri Lankans are expected to gather for a training camp in the mountain city of Kandy on May 10 and leave for England some eight days later.

Australia players wary of Malinga return

SLC president Thilanga Sumathipala said the Pallekelle stadium on the outskirts of Kandy was the best local venue to replicate England conditions. 

Sri Lanka will play two ODIs against Scotland before they face Australia and New Zealand in the tournament warm-up matches.

Sri Lanka squad: Angelo Mathews (c), Upul Tharanga (vc), Niroshan Dickwella, Kusal Perera, Kusal Mendis, Chamara Kapugedera, Asela Gunaratne, Dinesh Chandimal, Lasith Malinga, Suranga Lakmal, Nuwan Pradeep, Nuwan Kulasekera, Thisara Perera, Lakshan Sandakan and Seekkuge Prasanna.

Champions Trophy 2017 Guide

Squads: Every Champions Trophy squad named so far

Group A: Australia, New Zealand, England, Bangladesh.

Group B: India, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Pakistan.


Schedule


Warm-up matches


26 May – Australia v Sri Lanka, The Oval

27 May – Bangladesh v Pakistan, Edgbaston

28 May – India v New Zealand, The Oval

29 May – Australia v Pakistan, Edgbaston

30 May – New Zealand v Sri Lanka, Edgbaston

30 May – Bangladesh vs India, The Oval


Tournament


1 June – England v Bangladesh, The Oval (Day)

2 June – Australia v New Zealand, Edgbaston (D)

3 June – Sri Lanka v South Africa, The Oval (D)

4 June – India v Pakistan, Edgbaston (D)

5 June – Australia v Bangladesh, The Oval (D/N)

6 June – England v New Zealand, Cardiff (D)

7 June – Pakistan v South Africa, Edgbaston (D/N)

8 June – India v Sri Lanka, The Oval (D)

9 June – New Zealand v Bangladesh, Cardiff (D)

10 June – England v Australia, Edgbaston (D)

11 June – India v South Africa, The Oval (D)

12 June – Sri Lanka v Pakistan, Cardiff (D)

14 June – First semi-final (A1 v B2), Cardiff (D)

15 June – Second semi-final (A2 v B1), Edgbaston (D)

18 June – Final, The Oval (D)


19 June – Reserve day (D)

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