The Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) on Monday announced the list of players who will not be taking part in the Pakistan Tour which will commence from September 27. The SLC held a meeting with players on Monday, who were chosen as part of a preliminary squad that will be touring Pakistan to play 03 ODIs and 03 T20I matches. According to an official, the players were given the freedom to decide whether to take part in the forthcoming Pakistan tour or not.
The meeting was aimed to inform the players about the security arrangements, during the forthcoming tour and also to find out their decision whether to take part in the tour or not before selectors sat for the selection of squads for the ODI and T20I series. During the meeting, Former Sri Lanka Air Force Commander, Marshal Air Roshan Goonetileke, who is currently the Chief Security Advisor of the SLC, briefed the players about the security situation in Pakistan and the security arrangements made by Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) during Sri Lanka team’s tour of their country. Also, Mr. Asantha De Mel, chairman of the National Selection Panel spoke about the explained about the selection policy for future tours to the players.
Kusal Janith Perera
Dhananjaya De Silva
Kusal Mendis was absent for the selection process due to an injury he had suffered during the New Zealand Series. After the players decided to not participate in Pakistan Tour, the national selectors selected a new T20I and ODI squad to tour Pakistan, and the respective squads are being sent for approval to the Minister of Telecommunication, Foreign Employment and Sports Honorable Harin Fernando in due course.
Earlier, the senior Sri Lankan players including captain Dimuth Karunaratne, Lasith Malinga and Angelo Matthews had refused to tour Pakistan for a limited-over series later this month that had left the PCB authorities worried. Though the PCB had made no official comment on the senior Sri Lankan players' availability, sources in the board said they were in touch with the Sri Lankan board officials and Sports Minister Harin Fernando. Sri Lankan officials had reportedly made several trips to Pakistan to ensure the security arrangements made for their players. However, despite multiple level clearances, senior Sri Lankan players had expressed inconveniences in traveling to Pakistan, fearing terror strikes and security lapses.