Mathews likely to Lanka's Champions Trophy opener

"I think picking finalists is too tough, but my favourites for the semi-finals would be Australia, England, India and South Africa", Sangakkara, who won the Champions Trophy 2002 and World Twenty20 2014 with Sri Lanka, said.

Sri Lanka Squad: Angelo Mathews (capt), Niroshan Dickwella (wk), Upul Tharanga, Dinesh Chandimal, Nuwan Pradeep, Asela Gunaratne, Chamara Kapugedera, Kusal Mendis, Kusal Perera, Seekkuge Prasanna, Lakshan Sandakan, Suranga Lakmal, Thisara Perera, Lasith Malinga, Nuwan Kulasekara.

It should be noted that Mathews has not played any global match since January because of a hamstring complaint, and had also missed a tri-series in Zimbabwe late past year because of "multiple injuries" in his legs.

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"Mathews will engage in supervised recovery over the next few days but will most likely sit out the first group stage match against South Africa on Saturday (3)", the SLC release stated.

Mathews made 95 in a keenly fought warm-up against Australia on May 26 with Australia winning in the last over despite some impressive bowling from the Sri Lankans. As many as nine bowlers were used by New Zealand but on a ground with small boundaries, Sri Lanka had no problem scoring briskly.

He also played just three games for Delhi Daredevils in this year's Indian Premier League, missing the early part of the lucrative tournament with his hamstring injury.

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But things started going downhill ever since their maiden World T20 triumph with the senior duo of Kumar Sangakkara and Mahela Jayawardene biding adieu to their global careers the following year.

Sri Lanka and South Africa have only twice clashed in England in an ODI previously.

"This year we have four Asian teams in the tournament and clearly India are current the pack-leaders in the region".

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