Handing over of the team jersey to Women’s T20 Captain Chamari Atapattu by Nimesh Amalean, General Manger - Marketing, MAS Active and Shaila Amalean - Patron - Women Go Beyond programme, MAS Holdings.
By Amindha de Alwis
The Sri Lankan Women’s squad for the ICC Women’s T20 Cricket World Cup 2020 led by Chamari Atapattu, departed the island for Melbourne, Australia last night.
The squad will take part in a seven-day training programme in Melbourne where they will also engage in two warm-up games versus state sides.
Thereafter, the team will move to Adelaide where they will play South Africa and England in official pre-tournament warm-up fixtures.
Sri Lanka has been placed in Group A alongside Australia, India, New Zealand and Bangladesh, and will get their tournament up and running on February 22 versus New Zealand at the WACA Stadium in Perth.
They will play hosts Australia at the same venue two days later before moving to the Junction Oval in Melbourne where they will face India and Bangladesh on February 29 and March 2 respectively.
Speaking on the eve of her team’s departure, skipper Chamari Atapattu said, “We are in a tough group. However, in T20 cricket it is the team that performs on the day which goes forward. Two or three good individual performances can win you a match in this format. I believe that rankings are just a number. What is important is how we perform on the day.”
Skipper Atapattu was confident that the younger players would do justice to their selection. “The squad has a blend of youth and experience. Once a player reaches this level, their age is not important. It is the player’s talent and ability that is important,” she said.
Head Coach Harsha De Silva also put his weight behind the selection of the youngsters.
“We have got a few new girls in the squad and they have been picked on merit. We had two emerging series’ recently; the Emerging Asia Cup and the South Asian Games. We had the Under-23 girls playing those tournaments and they did really well,” De Silva said.
The T20 World Cup will also mark the final bow of veteran all-rounder Shashikala Siriwardene, who De Silva indicted would be calling time on her career following the tournament.
Yesterday also saw the unveiling of the official team jersey for the event. Captain Chamari Atapattu was presented with the team jersey produced by MAS Holdings, the Official Clothing Sponsor of Sri Lanka Cricket
Sri Lanka Women’s squad Chamari Atapattu (Captain), Harshitha Madavi (Vice Captain), Anushka Sanjeevani, Hansima Karunaratne, Shashikala Siriwardene, Nilakshi De Silva, Ama Kanchana, Kavisha Dilhari, Udeshika Prabodhini, Achini Kulasuriya, Hasini Perera, Sathya Sandeepani, Umesha Thimashini, Sagandika Kumari and Dilani Manodara
Standy players: Sachini Nasansala, Prasadani Weerakkody, Oshadi Ranasinghe, Tharika Sewwandi and Inoka Ranaweera