Colombo - Sri Lanka have included pace spearhead Lasith Malinga in their 15-man
squad for the Cricket World Cup despite concerns over his fitness after
ankle surgery, the country's cricket board said on Wednesday.
The mercurial Malinga had left ankle surgery in September and missed the team's one-day series against India and England.
is expected to return in the later stages of the seven match ODI series
against New Zealand, which starts in Christchurch on Sunday, and was
included in the World Cup squad, subject to fitness, the Sri Lanka board
said in a statement.
The 31-year-old Malinga, whose yorkers
delivered with a sling-shot action at times makes him almost unplayable,
will be crucial for Sri Lanka's chances in the 50-over World Cup in
Australia and New Zealand.
Fast bowler Shaminda Eranga was the
only name missing from the 16-member squad that will play in the ODI
series in New Zealand as a warm-up for the February 14-March 29 World Cup.
2011 World Cup runners-up, who lost to India in the final, also
included off-spinner Sachithra Senanayake, who was recently cleared to
bowl after remedial work on his action.
The team will be led by all-rounder Angelo Mathews with left-handed batsman Lahiru Thirimanne as his deputy.
island nation will play two warm-up games, against South Africa and
Zimbabwe, before their opening match of the tournament against co-hosts
New Zealand on February 14.Sri Lanka Cricket World Cup squad:
Angelo Mathews (captain), Tillakaratne Dilshan, Kumar Sangakkara, Mahela Jayawardene, Lahiru Thirimanne, Dinesh Chandimal, Dimuth Karunaratne, Jeevan Mendis, Thisara Perera, Suranga Lakmal, Lasith Malinga, Dhammika Prasad, Nuwan Kulasekara, Rangana Herath, Sachithra Senanayake