Colombo [Sri Lanka], July 11 (ANI): The India's tour of Sri Lanka will be starting from July 26 onwards, with the tour starting with a three-match T20I series.

The tour will also consist of a three-match ODI series, which will kickstart from August 1 onwards.

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The Pallekele International Stadium will be hosting the T20I leg of the series while the R Premadasa is getting to host the 50-over matches, as per ESPNCricinfo.

The first T20I will take place on July 26, followed by the second one on July 27 and the final one on July 29.

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Both teams will be taking to the field with new head coaches. While legendary all-rounder Sanath Jayasuriya has been named as the interim head coach for Lankan Lions, this will also be the first assignment for former Indian opener Gautam Gambhir as the head coach, succeeding the T20 World Cup winning coach Rahul Dravid.

India's last tour of Sri Lanka for a bilateral white-ball series came back in July 2021, with Dravid coaching the Shikhar Dhawan led side. India won the ODI series 2-1 while Sri Lanka secured the T20I series with same margin.

This will be India's second T20I series after their T20 World Cup win, defeating South Africa by seven runs in the final. Currently, a new-look India side, led by Shubman Gill and coached by VVS Laxman is on a tour to Zimbabwe for a five-match T20I series. The series is currently in India's hands by 2-1, with the fourth T20I set to be played on Saturday at Harare.

On the other hand, the T20 World Cup was poor for Sri Lanka as they failed to reach the Super Eights. They lost to South Africa and Bangladesh in the group stage and could only register one win against the Netherlands. Their game against Nepal was washed out due to rain. With just three points, Lanka finished in the third spot in Group D.

Following Rohit Sharma's announcement to retire from T20Is after winning the ICC T20 World Cup, all-rounder Hardik Pandya is likely to lead the Men in Blue in the shortest format of the game. Meanwhile, wicketkeeper-batter KL Rahul will lead the team in ODIs, as per the sources.

"Hardik Pandya is all set to lead the Indian team in the T20, Rohit Sharma's announced his retirement. Hardik is also unlikely to be rested for the upcoming series vs Sri Lanka," BCCI Sources told ANI.

In the T20 WC, Pandya scored 144 runs in six innings at an average of 48.00 and a strike rate of 151.57, with a half-century and best score of 50*. He also took 11 wickets in eight games at an average of 17.36 and an economy rate of 7.64, with the best figures of 3/20.

This tournament marked a redemption tale for Hardik, who was booed out in every stadium across India during the IPL 2024 after taking over the captaincy of Mumbai Indians (MI) from five-time IPL champion Rohit Sharma. The all-rounder, who was just making a comeback into the game after suffering an injury to his ankle in the 50-over World Cup last year, became a victim of online trolling and fan wars as he was accused of betraying the MI franchise, Rohit and his former franchise Gujarat Titans (GT), which he led to IPL title in 2022.

On the other hand, KL Rahul was omitted from the Men in Blue T20 WC squad despite performing brilliantly in the ODI World Cup 2023 which was held in India, scoring 452 runs in 11 games with a century and two fifties. (ANI)

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