Uncapped batting allrounder Thikshila de Silva has been named in Sri Lanka’s squad for the Twenty20 series against South Africa, which starts on the 20th of January.
Thikshila is yet to play international cricket in any format. The other new member of the T20 squad is the left-arm wristspinner Lakshan Sandakan, who has played three Tests and an ODI.
Legspinner Jeffrey Vandersay, who impressed in the World T20 last year, has been left out in favour of Seekkuge Prasanna. Fast bowler Dushmantha Chameera has been omitted, while seamers Isuru Udana and Nuwan Kulasekara have been recalled.
The other major omissions are wicketkeeper-batsman Kusal Perera, and allrounders Thisara Perera, who is currently playing in the Big Bash League and Dasun Shanaka.
23 year old Thikshila has largely been picked on potential and on his reputation as a clean striker of the ball for the Chilaw Marians.
In 15 domestic T20 innings so far, he has hit 15 sixes and as many fours, collecting his 218 runs at a strike rate of 144. The first of the three T20s against South Africa is set to be played on January 20 in Centurion.