Lasith Malinga
Lasith Malinga (Center) will be leading Sri Lanka in the two-match T20 series against Pakistan.Reuters

Sri Lanka Cricket selectors have announced a 15-member squad on Thursday for the forthcoming two-match Twenty20 (T20) series to be played against Pakistan.

Five uncapped players find their way into the squad. 

Fast bowler Binura Fernando, legspinner Jeffrey Vandersay and batsmen Shehan Jayasuriya, Dasun Shanaka, and Dhananjaya de Silva are the five uncapped players who are part of the 15-member Sri Lankan squad for the T20 series against Pakistan.

Dinesh Chandimal, Tharindu Kaushal and Lahiru Thirimanne are the three omissions.

Chamara Kapugedara, who last played a T20 match for Sri Lanka in June 2012, makes his way back into the squad. 

Twenty-year-old Fernando has been added in the squad because of his height and the kind of pace he generates, while Vandersay impressed with his 8-wicket haul in the three-day game against Pakistan in June 2015. Shehan Jayasuriya and Dhananjaya de Silva are aggressive openers and can also add to the bowling options with their off-spin. 

"We need to get the younger brigade in the stream, so we have a gradual transition leading up to the next World T20 and the 50-over World Cup beyond that. We need to put them on the ground and see how they perform," chief selector Kapila Wijegunawardene told reporters at a press conference on Thursday. 

Kapugedara, who has played 21 T20's and 92 ODIs for Sri Lanka, was recalled because of his ability to hit long shots.  

"With all these youngsters coming into the team we also need to balance the team with experience. Kapugedara has not been in the team for a while, but we know he can do that, and we've picked him on that basis," Wijegunawardene added. 

Wijegunawardene also explained why the selectors have chosen to leave out Chandimal, Thirimannne and Tharindu Kaushal for the upcoming T20 series against Pakistan.

"Chandimal and Thirimanne needed to prepare for the upcoming India Test series which is a very important one. Offspinner Tharindu Kaushal we are also saving for the Tests. We're trying to manage all their workloads because we have a very busy calendar till July next year," he said. 

Sri Lanka's Squad for the T20 Series Against Pakistan: Lasith Malinga (C), TM Dilshan, Kusal Perera, Kithruwan Vithanage, Dhananjaya de Silva, Angelo Mathews, Dasun Shanaka, Chamara Kapugedera, Shehan Jayasuriya, Thisara Perera, Jeffrey Vandersay, Nuwan Kulasekara, Binura Fernando, Chaturanga de Silva, Milinda Siriwardene.

Also read