The opener last played an ODI in the last edition of the tournament, and has only played 17 ODIs all told. He averages 15.83 with a high score of 60. His overall List A numbers are creditable, with an average 34.34 from 120 games, including six centuries.
The left-hander has made waves in Test cricket in recent times, earning selection in the ICC's Test Team of the Year 2018, and captained Sri Lanka to an historic Test series whitewash in South Africa earlier this year, standing in for Dinesh Chandimal.
Sri Lanka's ODI captaincy has exchanged hands frequently in recent months. Their last four series have seen them cycle through three different skippers, with all of Angelo Mathews, Chandimal, and Lasith Malinga having been at the helm at some point.
Karunaratne was fined and reprimanded recently by Sri Lanka Cricket after a drink-driving incident, for which he also had his driving licence suspended. Sri Lanka are yet to announce their World Cup preliminary squad.