Karunaratne, Sandakan added to Sri Lanka Test Squad | Sunday Observer

Karunaratne, Sandakan added to Sri Lanka Test Squad

25 April, 2021
Chamika Karunaratne-Lakshan Sandakan
Chamika Karunaratne-Lakshan Sandakan

Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) National Selectors yesterday recalled left-arm wrist spinner Lakshan Sandakan and fast bowler Chamika Karunaratne for the second Test against Bangladesh scheduled to begin next week.

The pair has been added to the 18-member Test squad following the injury to their key bowler Lahiru Kumara who broke down with a hamstring injury while fielding on the third day of the first Test on Friday.

The 24-year-old paceman will be sidelined for the remainder of the series as a precautionary measure after yesterday’s MRI scans confirmed the presence of the injury.

“We will not take a risk with Lahiru Kumara’s injury at the moment and he will bat in the first Test only if the situation is really needed,” an official close to the team told the Sunday Observer yesterday.

Meanwhile, Karunaratne has played just a solitary Test against Australia in 2019 but continues to impress in domestic cricket and was among the wickets during the recent SLC Major Club Limited Over Tournament.

Sri Lanka’s bowling attack was fully exposed by the Bangladesh top order during the first Test as the visitors rattled up 541 for seven – their second highest total against the islanders.

Leg-spinner Wanidu Hasaranga went wicketless for 111 runs from his 36 overs while off-spinner Dhananjaya de Silva conceded 130 runs for his solitary wicket in 30 overs.

Sandakan’s presence in the squad could be mainly due to the lack of variation in Sri Lanka’s bowling attack in the first Test.

Sandakan of course, played his last Test against England in 2018 but his record at the Pallekele Stadium may have prompted the National Selectors to be included for the second Test. The second Test will commence on April 29 at the same venue.