Sri Lanka Cricket board on Tuesday announced a 24-member squad for the limited-overs series against England, starting June 23. Kusal Janith Perera will lead the Sri Lanka squad, which will play three one-day internationals and three T20I matches against England. The players from the Island nation agreed to tour England but maintained their stand against signing annual contracts. The players, including Test captain Dimuth Karunaratne and ODI skipper Perera, had refused to sign new contracts which offer lower base salaries and more performance-based incentives.

Meanwhile, senior all-rounder Angelo Mathews, Dinesh Chandimal and Dimuth Karunaratne continue to remain absent from the squad as Sri Lanka look to build a team for the future. Avishka Fernando, Oshada Fernando have been recalled to the Sri Lankan side.

The new additions to the mix are the uncapped players Charith Asalanka, Dhananjaya Lakshan and Ishan Jayaratne, while one Test-old Praveen Jayawickrama, who has been nominated for the ICC Men’s Player of the Month for May, has also found a spot.

The Minister of Youth and Sports, Namal Rajapaksa gave his approval for the chosen squad. Sri Lanka Team will depart in the early hours of June 9, 2021, to take part in the T20i and ODI series.

Earlier, amid the tussle between Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) and the national players, the cricketers agreed to tour England uncontracted.

The cricketers had been showing resistance towards the contracts, which they felt lacked transparency and did not adequately compensate senior players.

“This is the transparency the players had been requesting from the outset,” ESPNcricinfo quoted the players’ lawyer Nishan Premathiratne as saying.

“They will play this tour without signing any contract. They have signed a voluntary declaration, but there is nothing there about player remuneration. They have always been committed to playing for Sri Lanka,” he added.

Earlier, thirty-eight Sri Lanka cricketers had signed a statement refusing to sign the tour contracts and it is an increase from 24 players who had previously made their resistance to the new scheme.

Sri Lanka will leave for England on Tuesday evening and will lock horns in three T20Is and three ODIs, beginning June 23. Kusal Perera-led side had suffered a 1-2 series defeat against Bangladesh in the three-match ODI series last month.

Sri Lanka squad for the series against England: Kusal Perera (C), Kusal Mendis, Danushka Gunathilaka, Avishka Fernando, Pathum Nissanka, Niroshan Dickwella, Dhananjaya de Silva, Oshada Fernando, Charith Asalanka, Dasun Shanaka, Wanindu Hasaranga, Ramesh Mendis, Chamika Karunaratne, Dhananjaya Lakshan, Ishan Jayaratne, Dushmantha Chameera, Isuru Udana, Asitha Fernando, Nuwan Pradeep, Shiran Fernando, Lakshan Sandakan, Akila Dananjaya, Praveen Jayawickrama.