As the World Cup approaches, Third Umpire will be selecting a ODI World 11, with one player featuring every day. We continue with our second opener, Sri Lanka's Sanath Jayasuriya.
Sanath Jayasuriya may be 37, but he remains one of the world’s finest exploiters of fielding restrictions. Over a gargantuan ODI career spanning 374 matches, Jayasuriya has maintained a strike rate of 90, attacking brutally regardless of circumstances.
Particularly strong when given a modicum of width outside off stump, the veteran will relish the short Caribbean outfields; expect plenty of square cuts for six.
And, despite what his age may suggest, he is not in decline: the explosive opener averaged 48 in 2006. As if to prove he is still capable of far more than mere cameos, Jayasuriya bludgeoned a phenomenal, 99-ball 152 at Headingly last summer, as Sri Lanka romped to 322 with 13 overs to spare. In partnership with the emerging Upal Tharanga, Jayasuriya forms the world’s most exhilarating ODI opening pair. Meanwhile, his canny left-arm spin should be more than useful on the slow tracks.