Denly given chance to stake England World Cup claim as replacement for injured Dawson
The Kent batting all-rounder was part of the Test squad due to arrive in Sri Lanka next week but he was asked to board the plane early to provide cover for the unlucky Dawson, who featured in the first two ODIs.
Dawson felt a pain in his side whilst bowling in Saturday’s victory in Dambulla and aggravated it later in the day. He is likely to face a month out and has therefore been ruled out of the series.
It will come as a huge blow to the Hampshire all-rounder, with the world's No.1-ranked ODI team having much competition for places ahead of the world’s flagship one-day tournament on home soil next year.
Denly made his name as a top-order batsman but impressed with his leg-spin bowling in county cricket this year, claiming 14 wickets in 50-over cricket. He averaged 70 in the Royal London Cup and was named by his fellow professionals as the Professional Cricketers' Association’s player of the year for 2018.
Denly, who last played for England in a T20I versus Pakistan in February 2010, is unlikely to arrive in time for Wednesday's third ODI in Kandy, with either Tom or Sam Curran likely to step in for Dawson.