Ambidextrous spinner set to debut for Sri Lanka
AMBIDEXTROUS spinner Kamindu Mendis has been named in a 15-member Sri Lanka squad to take on England in a one-off Twenty20 match.
The 20-year-old, who captained his country in under-19 matches, was brought into the squad led by captain Thisara Perera for Saturday's match at Premadasa International Stadium in Colombo under lights.
Mendis is hoping to make his international debut after a number of impressive performances, most notably for a Sri Lanka Board XI in a tour match against England.
Mendis sent down eight overs in that 50-over match, famously bowling left-arm spin to right-handed Joe Root and right-arm off-spinners to the left-handed Eoin Morgan.
Kamindu also starred with the bat, hitting 61 from just 72 balls in a performance that impressed England all-rounder Moeen Ali.
"I've never seen someone do that live, but it's great and fantastic for the game," Ali said.
"It's amazing he was so accurate with both arms and it will be the way cricket is going to go.
"You hear rumours about these guys being around, but for him to bowl to that standard and be that good is fantastic.
"I've tried bowling left-arm but I was so bad! You just don't have that same feel."
Former skipper Angelo Matthews was a notable omission from the squad, while Lasith Malinga returns to the Twenty20 fold, after impressing during the one day series.
Sri Lanka T20 squad: Thisara Perera (captain), Dinesh Chandimal, Niroshan Dickwella, Kusal Perera, Kusal Mendis, Dhananjaya de Silva, Dasun Shanaka, Kamindu Mendis, Isuru Udana, Lasith Malinga, Akila Dhananjaya, Dushmantha Chameera, Kasun Rajitha, Lakshan Sandakan