Sri Lankan team arrives in Guwahati for the T20I series against India

GUWAHATI: The Sri Lankan cricket team, led by veteran pacemakers. Lasith Malinga , arrived Thursday for the T20 series of three games against India amid strict security measures after the city witnessed widespread protests against the Citizens Amendment Act (CAA).

The Sri Lankan team headed straight to the team's hotel in the middle of thick security coverage.

Members of the Indian team are expected to arrive in batches on Friday for the series opening on Sunday.

Both teams have optional training sessions, Sri Lanka followed by India at night, said an official of the Assam Cricket Association (ACA).

Assam had witnessed widespread protests against the CAA in December, which affected Ranji and U-19 parties nationwide due to curfew.

But the situation is absolutely normal now and tourism is back in the state. We are organizing the Khelo India Games since January 10 and about seven thousand players will participate, ACA secretary Devajit Saikia told PTI.

Now it is safer than anywhere else in the country. The state government deals with the security agreement and there is no problem.

Nearly 27,000 tickets from the Barasapra stadium with a capacity for 39,500 have already been sold out.

People were busy with Christmas and New Year celebrations. Now we are waiting for a last minute ticket, he said.

The second T20 will be played in Indore on January 7, while Pune will host the final game of the series on January 10.

The short series will mark the Twenty20 World Cup countdown for the two neighboring countries.

India plays eight T20I, including five in New Zealand, before its first T20 World Cup match against South Africa in Perth on October 24.

Former patron Angelo Mathews and Dhananjaya de Silva have been removed from the 16-member squad of Sri Lanka. Mathews last played a T20I against South Africa in August 2018.

For India, the series will mark the return of its spearhead Jasprit Bumrah, who recovered from a lower back surgery, while the first Shikhar Dhawan match will also return.

Starter Rohit Sharma and pacemaker Mohammed Shami have rested for the three T20I.

Sri Lanka squad: Lasith Malinga (captain), Danushka Gunatilleke, Avishka Fernando , Angelo Mathews, Dasun Shanaka, Kusal Perera, Niroshan Dickwella , Dhananjaya de Silva, Isuru Udana, Bhanuka Rajapaksha, Dasan Fernando, Wanidu Raja, Kasun Lahiru Kumara, Kusal Mendis, Lakshan Moonakan.