Malinga, Mendis unlikely for second ODI

Sri Lanka will be without Lasith Malinga in the second ODI against Zimbabwe, and are also likely to miss Kusal Mendis, with both players having contracted viral influenza after the first game. SLC also said that left-arm wristspinner Lakshan Sandakan had missed the first ODI due to the same illness, but has come back into contention for the second.

Sri Lanka have drafted seamer Suranga Lakmal, and batsman Chamara Kapugedara into the squad as potential replacements for Malinga and Mendis. Both Lakmal and Kapugedara played in the recent Champions Trophy.

Malinga is currently five wickets short of 300 in ODIs, five short of becoming the fourth Sri Lanka bowler to the mark after Muttiah Muralitharan, Chaminda Vaas and Sanath Jayasuriya. Mendis became the joint second-fastest Sri Lankan batsman to 1000 ODI runs on Friday, and has also been the most consistent Sri Lanka batsman over the past 12 months.

The second ODI will be played in Galle on July 2. Sri Lanka are currently 0-1 down in the series, having lost the first ODI despite posting 316 for 5; Zimbabwe’s successful chase was the first time any team pursued an ODI target in excess of 300 and won on the island. Three more ODIs will be played in the series, all in Hambantota, followed by a one-off Test at the R Premadasa Stadium in Colombo.

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