Sri Lanka Tour Should Provide Superb Preparation For Team Canada’s Mission ODI!

Canada’s National Men’s cricketers will
be travelling to Sri Lanka to engage
in a Warmup tour in preparation for
their participation in the Namibia ICC
2023 World Cup Qualifier. The Saad Bin Zafar-led
Canadians will play four 50Over matches against a Sri
Lanka Development Team during their stay on the subcontinental

The Sri Lanka Tour matches will be
played on March 7, 13, 14 and 20. The matches on the
7 and 20 will be played at the Colts Cricket Ground.
Those of the 13 and 14 will be staged at the P Sara
Oval and the Colombo Cricket Ground respectively.
At the conclusion of the Sri Lanka preparation tour
the fourteen-member squad for the Namibia 2023
Qualifier will be chosen. The March 24 – April 5
Namibia Qualifier will serve as the penultimate stage
of the qualification process for ICC 2023 World Cup
participation. The top two teams from the Namibia
tournament will progress to the final Qualifier to be
held in Zimbabwe this coming August.

The four Sri Lanka Warmup matches should provide
the Canadian squad with some much-welcomed,
superb, preparation for the Namibia Qualifier. Their
Sri Lanka Development Team opponents will most
likely be comprised of the sub-content island’s
brightest future stars. As such all four matches should
prove to be fiercely competitive.

The matches will also provide Canadian National Head Coach Pubudu Dassanayake, as well as his
Assistant Abhishek Sharma, with the ideal opportunity to further assess the relative strengths of each of the
players on the sixteen-member squad. This will be necessary for Dassanayake and Sharma to collectively
determine what the most effective starting XI should be for the Namibia matches to follow. Obviously as
team captain, Saad Bin Zafar will also most likely be a part of such deliberations as well.
One of the immediate dilemmas the Canadian Think Tank will have to give serious consideration to, is as
to exactly where in the batting lineup the returning, former captain, Navi Dhaliwal will fit in. Having missed
the preceding tours of Oman and Malaysia, Dhaliwal will be seeking to use the Sri Lanka Warmup matches
as a means of fully re-establishing his merits for automatic inclusion to the starting XI for the subsequent
Namibia matches!

The ideal combination for the team’s bowling attack is another area that will require some serious
deliberations and thoughtful consideration, particularly in terms of the seamers. The chosen sixteen-member
squad includes as many as four seamers in Jeremy Gordon, Dilon Heyliger, Ammar Khalid and Kaleem Sana.
The squad, however, also includes a bevy of spinners, of either the front-line or part-time variety.
Skipper Bin Saad Zafar will lead the spin attack with support primarily from Nikhil Dutta, Harsh Thaker,
Ravi Singh and Parvat Singh. Which combination of seam and spin will be most productive in Namibia is,
therefore, one of the major decisions the Canadian management team will have to make. Towards which
they will be hoping for the Sri Lanka Warmup matches to provide the guiding answers.

Playing cricket under Namibia’s testing conditions will likely be far from easy. Canadian squad Trainer Ankar
Sharma will, therefore, be wanting for his charges to be fit and ready long before the Sri Lanka matches are
over. The majority of the squad had trained extensively indoors in the period prior to its Sri Lanka departure.
Even at its most intense, indoor training cannot, however, ever fully compensate for the requirements of
outdoor match play. The squad’s fitness regimes in Sr Lanka will, therefore, be crucial to ensuring that each
and every one of its members will be in prime condition in time for the Namibia matches.

With all that’s in store and at stake, the forthcoming Sri Lanka tour could yet prove to be of vital significance
towards determining Canada’s subsequent performances in Namibia. Here’s wishing the entire squad the
very best of luck and success.

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