Sri Lanka will begin its Asia Cup 2022 campaign in the tournament opener against Afghanistan on Saturday in Dubai.
Ahead of the 15th edition of the Asia Cup which marks a return to the T20I format for the second time, here is everything you need to know about the Sri Lankan squad:
Marred by a lack of pedigree after the exit of its stalwarts post the T20 World Cup triumph in 2014, Sri Lanka has tottered in the quest to pave its way back to the top of the T20 game. Its struggles over the last six years have also witnessed a constant shuffle in the leadership tank.
With Dasun Shanka assuming captaincy in the limited-overs formats in 2021, Sri Lanka has attempted a revival of sorts. The arrival of fresh talent in Wanindu Hasaranga and Charith Asalanka has also bolstered spirits. However, with inconsistency in personnel over each passing series, Sri Lanka’s core is still under reconstruction.
Asia Cup record in recent years
The five-time champion’s Asia Cup record in recent years has been underwhelming. Sri Lanka’s ODI performances hit an all-time low when it was trumped by Bangladesh and Afghanistan in the group stage of the 2018 Asia Cup, held in the UAE.
In the 2016 edition, where the tournament was played for the first time in the T20I format, Sri Lanka managed a solitary win over the UAE before being beaten by India, Pakistan and host Bangladesh.
After finishing as the leading wicket-taker (16) in his maiden appearance at the T20 World Cup in UAE and Oman last year, Wanindu Hasaranga will return as the bowling spearhead of the Sri Lankan attack.
Despite featuring in only five of Sri Lanka’s 11 T20Is this year, Hasaranga has scalped 10 wickets to emerge as the joint-highest wicket-taker alongside Dushmantha Chameera, who was ruled out of the Asia Cup with an injury. With conditions remaining hot and humid in Dubai, Hasaranga, with his wily leg-spin could prove to be the thorn for Bangladesh and Afghanistan in the group stage.
Form Guide (last 10 T20Is, most recent first): WLLLLLWLLL
Sri Lanka’s Asia Cup record (Overall - ODI + T20I): Played: 54, Won: 35, Lost: 19
Sri Lanka Asia Cup 2022 schedule
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