July 23, 2017 7:22:25 pm
Rangana Herath’s appointment as captain for Sri Lanka’s first Test against India has been confirmed when Sri Lanka Cricket declared the squad for the match. Herath leads in the absence of Dinesh Chandimal, who is recovering from pneumonia.
Angelo Mathews, who had resigned as Sri Lanka captain after the side’s shock defeat to Zimbabwe in the recently concluded ODI series. Dinesh Chandimal took over as skipper in the subsequent Test series against Zimbabwe.
Sri Lanka are hosting India for a three-match Test series that will be followed by a five-match ODI series and a lone T20I. Sri Lanka are ranked seventh in the ICC Test rankings. They have struggled to replace veterans like Kumar Sangakkara and Mahela Jayawardene and the players themselves have been found woefully unfit on multiple occasions.
Virat Kohli’s India will see Shikhar Dhawan and Rohit Sharma make a return to the Test setup. Dhawan and Abhinav Mukund are potential replacements for the injured Murali Vijay and Kohli had said that the two should see it as an opportunity rather than feel the pressure to perform. Dhawan and Rohit were among the runs in India’s warm-up matches, although they never got past 50. While Sri Lanka have had a tough time against Bangladesh and Zimbabwe at home, India have been on a role. They whitewashed New Zealand in 2016 before beating England 4-0 earlier in the year. This was followed by a victory in a lone Test against Bangladesh and a 2-1 win against Australia. This is the firs time since playing West Indies in 2016 that India are playing a Test series away from home.
Sri Lanka: Rangana Herath (C), Upul Tharanga, Dimuth Karunaratne, Kusal Mendis, Angelo Mathews, Asela Gunaratne, Niroshan Dickwella, Dhananjaya de Silva, Danushka Gunathilaka, Dilruwan Perera, Suranga Lakmal, Lahiru Kumara, Vishwa Fernando, Malinda Pushpakumara, Nuwan Pradeep
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