Sri Lanka have announced their 17-member Test squad for the upcoming tour to South Africa. Opening batsman Dimuth Karunaratne has been named as interim skipper for the two-match Test series. Dinesh Chandimal has been dropped from the side as Sri Lanka Cricket Board want him to go back and play domestic cricket to find form with the bat.
All-rounder Angelo Matthews is also ruled out of the series due to hamstring injury. He sustained the injury on Sri Lanka’s tour to New Zealand in December 2018. Chandimal has been dropped following his poor run with the bat in Australia. He only scored 24 runs in the two-match Test series and looked completely clueless against Australian pace attack.
Opener Kaushal Silva has made his comeback to the Test squad after a string of strong performances at the domestic level. The selectors have certainly wholesale changes for the tour to South Africa. Middle-order Roshen Silva has been dropped from the Test squad following his poor returns with the bat in New Zealand and Australia. Sadheera Samarawickrama also has been dropped from the side despite not playing a single game in Australia.
Off-spinner Dilruwan Perera and pace bowler Dushmantha Chameera have been dropped from the side as many are still shocked at this move made by Sri Lanka selectors. Milinda Siriwardana has earned his maiden call-up to the Test setup. Mohammad Shiraz and Lasith Embuldeniya are uncapped players in the bowling department for the tour to South Africa. Oshada Fernando is another promising player, who has done well with the bat at the domestic level. Angelo Perera has also shown incredible form and smashed two double hundreds in the first-class competition played in Sri Lanka.
Sri Lanka Cricket Board (SLC) have named wicket-keeper batsman Niroshan Dickwella as vice-captain of the national side in Test cricket. The opening game of the Test series will be played at Kingsmead Cricket Ground, Durban from 13th February.
Sri Lanka’s Test Squad: Dimuth Karunaratne (captain), Niroshan Dickwella, (vice-captain), Lahiru Thiramanne, Kaushal Silva, Kusal Mendis, Kusal Perera, Milinda Siriwardana, Mohamed Shiraz, Lakshan Sandakan, Lasith Embuldeniya, Dhananjaya De Silva, Oshada Fernando, Angelo Perera, Suranga Lakmal, Kasun Rajitha, Vishwa Fernando, Chamika Karunaratne,