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Cricket World Cup: Sri Lanka team guide

Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka celebrate on the way to a first series win in Australia

Sri Lanka's World Cup triumph in 1996 provided the blueprint for how modern one-day cricket is played and now, 15 years on, they will be looking for a repeat.

The household names of Sanath Jayasuriya and Chaminda Vaas may have been moved on, but an experienced squad still contains plenty of match-winners.

A formidable one-day side, particularly in Asia, Sri Lanka are genuine contenders to lift the trophy for a second time.

WORLD CUP RECORD

From winning only four games in their previous five tournaments, Sri Lanka changed the face of one-day cricket with victory in 1996. They were blasted through the early stages by openers Jayasuriya and Romesh Kaluwitharana before Aravinda de Silva's one-man show in the final against Australia saw them become the only host nation to ever lift the trophy. A first-round exit followed in 1999, before progress to the semis in 2003 and final in 2007.

THE SKIPPER
Kumar Sangakkara

A trained lawyer, Kumar Sangakkara is one of the most intelligent, articulate and likeable men in the international game. Has long since given up the gloves in Test cricket, but combines wicketkeeping and captaincy in the shorter formats. Despite the multi-tasking, the 33-year-old remains impressively consistent with the bat, even if he is without a one-day century since June 2008.

KEY MAN
Tillakaratne Dilshan

Competing with Virender Sehwag for the tag of most exciting opener on the planet, Tillakaratne Dilshan is Sri Lanka's modern-day Jayasuriya. Since being promoted to the top of the order in early 2009 his form has been outstanding, and Sri Lanka will be looking for more of the same in a tournament where early-innings hitting could be crucial. He is also the inventor of the infamous "Dilscoop" shot over the wicketkeeper's head which has become a limited-overs staple.

PROSPECTS

Sri Lanka will benefit from home advantage, but will not be under the same pressure as co-hosts India. With the batting to post big totals and, Sangakkara's men will be targeting the semi-finals at least. There's also the small matter of Muttiah Muralitharan's farewell to international cricket - do not rule out a fairytale ending.

Sri Lanka squad: Kumar Sangakkara (capt/wk), Mahela Jayawardene, Tillakaratne Dilshan, Dilhara Fernando, Rangana Herath, Chamara Kapugedera, Nuwan Kulasekara, Lasith Malinga, Ajantha Mendis, Muttiah Muralitharan, Thisara Perera, *Suraj Randiv, Thilan Samaraweera, Chamara Silva, Upul Tharanga.

*Randiv was called up as a replacement for Angelo Mathews



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see also
Sri Lanka hope to repeat triumph
14 Feb 11 |  Sri Lanka
Muralitharan sets retirement date
21 Jan 11 |  Sri Lanka
Vaas ponders Sri Lanka retirement
11 Jan 11 |  Sri Lanka
Cricket World Cup 2011 squads
19 Jan 11 |  Cricket
Cricket World Cup 2011
09 Mar 11 |  Cricket


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