Sri Lanka name strong Twenty20 squad

Aug 9, 2007 (AFP) – Mahela Jayawardene will lead a strong Sri Lankan team to the inaugural Twenty20 World Championships to be held in South Africa in September, officials said on Thursday. The 15-man squad shows no surprises, with prolific off-spinner Muttiah Muralitharan confirmed to play after earlier reports suggested that he may be rested from the 12-nation tournament.

Left-handed opener Jehan Mubarak takes over from former captain Marvan Atapattu, who earlier this week asked Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) to be released from his contract with the national team. His wish was granted Monday.

All-rounders Hasantha Fernando, Gayan Wijekoon and Kaushal Lokuarachchi have been recalled, SLC spokesman Samantha Algama said.

Sri Lanka, finalists at the 50-overs-a-side World Cup this year, have been drawn with New Zealand and Kenya in group C of the preliminary league, with the top two advancing to the Super Eights round.

The tournament, from September 11-24, features the nine nations currently playing Test cricket along with Zimbabwe, Kenya and Scotland.

Sri Lanka’s squad: Mahela Jayawardene (capt), Sanath Jayasuriya, Upul Tharanga, Kumar Sangakkara, Tillekeratne Dilsha

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