Sri Lanka legend Kumar Sangakkara says his former side will have to adopt a “back to basics” approach in the World Cup to make up for their chaotic lead-in.
Dimuth Karunaratne has been installed as captain, despite not having played a one-day international since the 2015 World Cup. In a 15-man squad full of surprises, there was no place for Dinesh Chandimal, the previous ODI captain, wicketkeeper Niroshan Dickwella, or the exciting young quick bowlers Dushmantha Chameera and Kasun Rajitha.
Sangakkara, who was speaking after being unveiled as the next president of MCC – he will be the first non-British person to hold the role – believes Sri Lanka need to adopt a more old-school approach to building an innings.
He said: “Dimuth Karunaratne is a very capable player, technically very sound, has been very successful in Test cricket over the last two years. With two new balls [in operation at once], the ability of someone to anchor the innings, to bat through a long period, is going to be very important.
“England plays its ODI cricket very differently now, but Sri Lanka is going to have to change its mindset and really to go back to basics – maximising the overs in terms of partnerships, and then deciding from which portions of the innings they start attacking from. Right now, they need solidity.”