After as many as ten Sri Lanka players opted out of the upcoming tour of Pakistan due to security issues, Sri Lanka announced a squad that comprised of players with less experience for the One-Day Internationals and Twenty20 Internationals. Lahiru Thirimanne will lead the ODI side whereas Dasun Shanaka will lead the T20I side as the regular captains were among those players who chose to back out from the tour.
Minod Banuka got his maiden call-up in the ODI squad, while Bhanuka Rajapakshain earned for the T20I squad. Danushka Gunathilaka and Lakshan Sandakan return to the side for both the series after having been excluded for the home ODI series against Bangladesh.
Among those players who opted out are Niroshan Dickwella, Kusal Janith Perera, Dhananjaya De Silva, Thisara Perera, Akila Dhananjaya, Lasith Malinga, Angelo Mathews, Suranga Lakmal, Dinesh Chandimal and Dimuth Karunaratne, giving the opportunity for the youngsters to play.
However, the players were given the chance to decide on their availability after a security briefing. There is a history of it. It was in Lahore, 2009 that the Sri Lankan team bus came under militant attack during their tour to Pakistan. This limited-overs series is going to be Sri Lanka’s first tour to the country since then, although they played a T20I game of a three-match series nearly two years ago, in Lahore in October 2017.
The tour comprised of three ODIs in Karachi and as many T20Is in Lahore between September 27 and October 9, before they will take on each other for a Test series that will be a part of the World Test Championship.
ODI Squad: Lahiru Thirimanne (C), Danushka Gunathilaka, Sadeera Samarawickrama, Avishka Fernando, Oshada Fernando, Shehan Jayasuriya, Dasun Shanaka, Minod Bhanuka, Angelo Perera, Wanindu Hasaranga, Lakshan Sandakan, Nuwan Pradeep, Isuru Udana, Kasun Rajitha, Lahiru Kumara
T20I Squad: Dasun Shanaka (C), Danushka Gunathilaka, Sadeera Samarawickrama, Avishka Fernando, Oshada Fernando, Shehan Jayasuriya, Angelo Perera, Bhanuka Rajapaksha, Minod Bhanuka, Lahiru Madushanka, Wanindu Hasaranga, Lakshan Sandakan, Isuru Udana, Nuwan Pradeep, Kasun Rajitha, Lahiru Kumara