PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad, April 9, 2008 (AFP) – Sri Lanka will use the three-match one-day international series against West Indies which opens here on Thursday to kick-start their preparations for the 2011 World Cup. Sri Lanka have made sweeping changes to the squad which drew the preceding two-Test series 1-1 with their hosts, and seven new players have been included to boost their stocks.
“There are a lot of youngsters, and what we are trying to do is develop a team for the next World Cup,” Sri Lanka captain Mahela Jayawardene said.
“We are going to try a few guys, some exciting youngsters. We want to be competitive against West Indies and see where we are in terms of our preparation for the World Cup.
“It’s going to be a very good series because West Indies are a very good one-day unit as well.”
Joining the squad for the ODI series are openers Upul Tharanga and Chamara Kapugedera, batsmen Ajantha Mendis, Mahela Udawatte, and Jehan Mubarak, all-rounder Kaushalya Weeraratne, and leg-spinner Malinga Bandara.
They have replaced Michael Vandort, Malinda Warnapura, Thilan Samaraweera, Prasanna Jayawardene, Muttiah Muralitharan, Ishara Amerasinge, and Chanaka Welegedara.
“Test cricket and ODI cr