COLOMBO: Star opener Dimuth Karunaratne will once again captain a relatively inexperienced Sri Lanka side during their two-match Test series against Bangladesh later this month.
Selectors named an 18-player squad for the crucial red-ball series with a host of key players missing as Sri Lanka chase crucial World Test Championship points.
Classy batter Roshen Silva has opted out of the Bangladesh tour, with former skipper Angelo Mathews and right-hander Dhananjaya De Silva asked to help Karunaratne out at the top of the Sri Lanka order.
Karunaratne is currently ranked sixth on the ICC Test Batting Rankings and he will be expected to provide plenty of runs and experience to a Sri Lanka side that is entering a crucial period in the World Test Championship with a home series against Australia to follow the matches in Bangladesh.
With Suranga Lakmal retired, Lahiru Kumara on the outer and Dushmantha Chameera concentrating on white-ball cricket, Sri Lanka’s seam attack is likely to be led by left-armer Vishwa Fernando.
The other seamers included in the squad are Kasun Rajitha, Asitha Fernando, Chamika Karunaratne and uncapped Dilshan Madushanka, with Mathews expected to provide plenty of support.
Left-arm spinner Lasith Embuldeniya will lead Sri Lanka’s spin attack, with Ramesh Mendis and Praveen Jayawickrama other options that Karunaratne will have at his disposal. The two-Test series commences in Chittagong on May 15, with the series then moving to Dhaka for the second and final Test on May 23.
Sri Lanka currently sit in fifth place on the World Test Championship standings, having won two Test matches and drawn another two during the 2021-23 period. Bangladesh have won just one Test during that same period and are in eighth position and currently only sit ahead of England.
— Sri Lanka Cricket 🇱🇰 (@OfficialSLC) May 4, 2022