I thought selecting him was a good choice, but obviously his batting is abject against good bowling (he averages 75 in Tests, but it was against Zimbabwe who have 120kph frontline bowlers and another who can bowl fast but was debuting). And his bowling is pretty good but Tharanga didn't even use him in today's game so there's honestly no point in playing him as a batsman if the captain doesn't trust his bowling.
He's 31 or something so age is not on his side, but I'd still give him the rest of this series to see if he can step up.
He might do well Sri Lanka but he is just like other bits and pieces alrounders. Does not have the capability to carry an innings to win by his own.
I think SL should continue with Gunaratne. He has had a bad start to his ODI career with several run outs, but when you watch him play you can easily see that he knows what he's doing, something that you dont see with Chandimal for example. He has good control with the bat and looks like someone who absorbs pressure well. Also theres no point trying new players for a little while and then ditching them a month later. This is the problem with SL cricket, too many players have come and gone, not enough time spent to help them out in any way. For examnple, Dasun Shanaka, Chaminda Bandara, Vishwa Fernando, Udara Jayasundera, Tharindu Kaushal, Milinda Siriwardana, Amila Aponso, Chathuranga de Silva, Angelo Perera, Avishka Fernando, I can go on forever. Its the wrong mentality to find a new player and kick him out a tour later, especially when he is playing away from home.
@Suren1998 Agree that the selectors should persist with players for longer, and Gunaratne hasn't been the luckiest. But unless he does something special in the last two ODIs, I don't see him continuing in the ODI side. If Tharanga won't even bowl him, there's no point of him being there if his batting is not up to scratch.
Also regarding Angelo Perera, I remember the match he was selected in and the shot he played when we in trouble was just absolutely disgusting (An ungainly and hurried pullshot which went straight up in the air) and you could tell he didn't have the mindset. Some players were selected two early, like Avishla Fernando who should play more in the A team. Some like Chathuranga de Silva are cases of selecting an XI for the conditions, it's SA and we already had a left arm spinning alrounder. Tharindu Kaushal got his doosra banned and he still hasn't got it retested it seems. But most like Shanaka, Siriwardena and Bandara were discarded too early (I think they'll select Aponso again in the next home series however.
New Zealand, England, South Africa all the tours ended in a disaster. Next is Australia tour. According to the current form I would go with Dickwella, Tharanga, Gunathilaka, Mendis, Mathews, Siriwardhana, Shanka, Gunaratne, Weerakkoday, Kumara, Lakmal, Malinga, Sandakan, another front line fast bowler and front line batsmen with a good strike rate.
Kusal Janiths form says as 16, 1, 0, 0, 25, 51, 14, 7, 4 is simply not good enough to include. On the other hand Siriwardhana 20, 115, 121, 12, 50, 54. Shanka 92, 59, 17, 50, 47. Both doing well with the ball. After seen this performance where the hell Thikshila came from ?
During the Bangladesh tour we should go with slightly pacer friendly conditions and Kumara, Lakmal, Pradeep, Chameera, Sandakan, Herath and probably Tharindu Kaushal.
He economical as a bowler, will be good in slow subcontinent wickets, in final T20 he got the Millar's wicket, and contained ABD without giving much runs.. He was a key players in T20 series and had the best avg in Test series in Zimbabwe, but was not given a chance to play in SA Tests.
Would depend on the wicket and now it aids his bowling I reckon. On SL style wickets he could be a handy with the ball to add to his batting.
He answered all the critics by scoring 114 not out against SA in last Odi, even the 4th odi scored 40+ runs. Even though he wasn't part of test squad, he picked Tahir and other bowlers better than dhanjaya and chandimal