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Jan 11, 2011

Jayasuriya, Vaas out of Sri Lanka's final squad for the World Cup

There was no place for sentiment in Sri Lanka's final team for the ICC World Cup Cricket 2011, with the national selection panel headed by former great Aravinda de Silva not selecting either Sanath Jayasuriya or Chaminda Vaas in the final fifteen.

Both Jayasuriya and Vaas had been team-mates of de Silva - with all three proving to be integral parts of the team that won the 1996 World Cup, which was the last one held in the subcontinent.

Sanath Jayasuriya and Vaas had been named in the provisional squad of 30 players, but their declining international powers meant that they couldn't find a place for themselves in the final squad, even though they had expressed their wish of playing a final World Cup before retiring. However, neither of them has featured in an ODI for Sri Lanka for over a year, and the chances of their both making the final squad were always slim.

Most of the squad that beat Australia in Australia 2-1 for a maiden ODI series triumph in the country has been retained. Among the surprise omissions was that of off-spinner Suraj Randiv. Randiv had given a good account of himself in his brief international career, alongwith proving to be a good fielder and decent batsman, but left-arm spinner Rangana Herath was preferred over him.

The absence of the veterans means Sri Lanka has only one player in their ranks who knows what it feels like to win a World Cup - world record holder Muttiah Muralitharan. Muralitharan had retired from Test cricket after the first Test against India with a fairytale finish getting to 800 wickets, but had said that he would be available for selection for the World Cup.

The team will be led by Kumar Sangakkara with Mahela Jayawardene being the vice-captain. India, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh host the 2011 World Cup, which will take place from February 19 to April 2.

Sri Lanka World Cup squad: Kumar Sangakkara (c & wk), Mahela Jayawardene (vc), Tillakaratne Dilshan, Upul Tharanga, Thilan Samaraweera, Chamara Silva, Chamara Kapugedera, Angelo Mathews, Thisara Perera, Nuwan Kulasekara, Lasith Malinga, Dilhara Fernando, Muttiah Muralitharan, Ajantha Mendis, Rangana Herath.

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