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Sri Lanka commits to Lahore T20I despite reluctance from players

18 October 2017

Though the players, all of whom have been awarded the central contract by their cricket board, did not explicitly refuse to tour Pakistan, they requested a change of venue due to security concerns.

The two teams will also play three Twenty20 internationals, the first two in Abu Dhabi (October 26 and 27) and the third in Lahore (October 29).

"SLC have over the past two months conducted a thorough evaluation with the assistance of the government of Sri Lanka, government of Pakistan, PCB and independent security experts", the SLC release said. A letter has been signed by 40 Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) contracted players, including most in the current squad, to president Thilanga Sumathipala, expressing unwillingness to travel to Pakistan, which has been a hotbed of terrorist attacks.

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Accordingly, the 15 member squad will be announced on October 20.

Earlier, a PCB official also confirmed that the Sri Lankan team won't back off from the tour as they have agreed to send their team in a meeting involving the PCB, the SLC and the ICC.

Captain Upul Tharanga scored an unbeaten 112 and became the first Sri Lanka batsman to carry his bat in an ODI, before his team was bowled out for 187 in 48 overs.

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Sri Lankan new-ball bowlers Lahiru Gamage (4/57) and Suranga Lakmal (1/42) made early inroads with three wickets inside first power-play.

Lahore will host the T20 series finale following several matches played in the United Arab Emirates, where Pakistan have played their "home" internationals since the ambush.

Meanwhile, Pakistan would play their second match today (Monday), with the series 1-0, the men in green would be eyeing to oush their lead further. Thisara Perera, now part of the ODI squad in the UAE, was Sri Lanka's only representative in those matches.

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Sri Lanka commits to Lahore T20I despite reluctance from players