Rex Clementine’s Cricket Round-up

Rex Clementine, in Island, 25 July 2018,  where the title  is “Gunathilaka faces uncertain future ….Opener axed from the ODI squad

Sri Lankan opener Danushka Gunathilaka faces an uncertain future after Sri Lanka Cricket charged him with breach of Code of Conduct during the second Test match against South Africa at SSC. SLC officials said that they will launch their own inquiry after an ongoing Police inquiry into misbehaviour. Gunathilaka is alleged to have booked two additional rooms in the Five Star team hotel on Saturday. While the Police have cleared him of serious misconduct, his friend, for whom Gunathilaka had booked the second room is under arrest.Gunathilaka, who hit twin fifties in the second Test that Sri Lanka won by 199 runs, is believed to have turned up at his SLC booked room at 2am on Sunday, breaching team curfew.

Sri Lanka’s senior players are believed to have put down their foot and demanded maximum punishment for the batsman. A previous disciplinary issue is sure to invite more trouble.Gunathilaka was suspended last August for being drunk, skipping training and arriving on the match day without his kit bag. The incident happened at Pallekele during India’s tour last year.

SLC withheld his payment for the second Test and suspended him from all forms of international cricket until an inquiry was conducted. A regular in Sri Lanka’s white ball team, Gunathilaka was not named for the five match ODI series that gets underway later this week in Dambulla.

Angelo Mathews will return to the side as captain as Sri Lanka’s ODI specialists such as Dasun Shanaka, Upul Tharanga and Thisara Perera were named in the 15 member squad. Uncapped left-arm spinner Prabath Jayasuriya was named in the squad along with all-rounder Shehan Jayasuriya, who last represented Sri Lanka two years ago.
Test opener Dimuth Karunaratne was named as one of the four stand-bys after a prolific Test series against the Proteas. The 30-year-old scored an unbeaten 158 in the first Test in Galle and into the bargain scored three half-centuries completely dominating the series. He was Man of the Match in both Tests and walked away with Player of the Series award as well.

Sri Lanka have an axe to grind with the Proteas after being whitewashed 5-0 in the last series between the countries in South Africa.
Sri Lanka Squad: Angelo Mathews (Captain), Dasun Shanaka, Kusal Janith Perera, Dhananjaya De Silva, Upul Tharanga, Kusal Mendis, Thisara Perera, Niroshan Dickwella, Suranga Lakmal, Lahiru Kumara, Kasun Rajitha, Akila Dananjaya, Prabath Jayasuriya, Lakshan Sandakan and Shehan Jayasuriya.

Standbys: Dimuth Karunaratne, Isuru Udana, Nishan Peiris and Jeffrey Vandersay.

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