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Sri Lanka will not take Bangladesh Test series lightly, says Mathews

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Oshada Fernando and Dhananjaya de Silva about to board the team bus.

Sri Lanka cricket team left for Bangladesh yesterday to take part in the two-Test match cricket series which will commence from May 15 in Chittagong, Bangladesh.

The two Test matches are more important as part of the ICC Test Cricket Championship and both teams are getting ready to take this challenge. The selection committee headed by Promodya Wickramasinghe has selected a 18-member Test squad for this series. 16 members left yesterday morning and skipper Dimuth Karunaratne who is presently away in England for County Championship playing for Yorkshire is expected to join Sri Lanka team on May 9 in Bangladesh. In addition, all-rounder Chamika Karunaratne who is away in India for IPL is also expected to join the Sri Lanka team before the first Test match.

Former skipper, Angelo Mathews the most experienced player of the Sri Lanka Test team said we will not take lightly this Test series against Bangladesh. Actually, this tour is a big challenge. We had good preparation for this tour and also played a practice game among our National players. We have more youngsters in our side with a few senior players. The youngsters and inexperienced players are not an excuse. This is an International cricket tournament as well as part of the ICC test championship and we are looking forward to do well. The players have good commitment and our aim is to give our best to win this Test series said, Angelo Mathews.


Sri Lanka’s most experienced player of the side  Angelo Mathews seen here before the team left. (pix courtesy SLC)

Bangladesh team is strong and they recently performed well both at home and away and they have home advantage in this series. We have to realize all this and make our plans to do our best to beat them.

We have to go there and execute our plans and I am sure we can do it and win the series. They will play on their home grounds and recently they beat strong teams. But we have a good squad and will go all out to win this series, said Mathews the 34-year-old all-rounder who will be playing his 95th Test match in Chittagong. He has already played 94 Tests making 6432 runs with a healthy average of 44.05 with 11 hundreds and 37 fifties.

Dinesh Chandimal the wicketkeeper and batter is the other senior players apart from the skipper Dimuth Karunaratne. Chandimal has played 64 Test matches having 4217 runs with an average of 39.4. All-rounder Dhananjaya de Silva, top-order batter Kusal Mendis, and Niroshan Dickwella are the other senior players on this side.

Oshada Fernando the inform batter, and last minute addition to the squad Kamindu Mendis in place of Roshen Silva and young Kamil Mishara are the top order batters while debutantes of the Test squad Leg spinner Suminda Lakshan, paceman Dilshan Madushanka, opener Kamil Mishara are yet to play a single Test while paceman Kasun Rajitha is back in the squad with Vishwa Fernando and Asitha Fernando to strengthen the pace bowling attack. Especially after Suranga Lakmal’s retirement from the Test and Dushmantha Chameera who is out from Test cricket to focus on T- 20 World Cup after his injury.

The off spinner Ramesh Mendis who missed the last India Test series due to injury is once again back in the side with leg spinners Lasith Embuldeniya and Praveen Jayawickrama also face a challenge on Bangladesh track.

The young Pathum Nissanka was not included for the tour due to injury along with Roshen de Silva who is playing England league cricket.

Two Test matches will be played during this tour while the first Test begins in Chiattagong, the second will be contested at the Sher-e-Bangla Cricket Stadium in Dhaka from the 23rd to the 27th of May.

Sri Lanka’s previous Test series was earlier this year against India. In which Sri Lankans were completely outplayed by Rohit Sharma’s side in India, losing the Test series 0-2, including an innings defeat.

Meanwhile, the newly appointed National head coach Chris Silverwood and Assistant coach Naveed Nawaz will go on this tour and both of them are ready to make their first assignment with Sri Lanka team. Nawaz the former Sri Lankan player who was the Bangladesh under 19 coach earlier said the Bangladesh wickets are more favourable for the batters and both sides have good stroke players. Chittagong wicket will help pacemen on the first day but later on will be conducive for spinners and will also help the batsmen. Dhaka wicket is slow and will help both spinners and batsmen. The Sri Lanka team will play two-day practice matches before the Test series which will help to adjust to the conditions.

Dharshana Gamage the fast bowling coach, Piyal Wijetunga the spin coach, and Selection Committee Chairman Promodya Wickramasinghe will also accompany the team. Mahinda Halangoda is the new Manager.

Sri Lanka test Squad: Dimuth Karunaratne(Captain), Kamil Mishara, Oshada Fernando, Angelo Mathews, Kusal Mendis, Dhananjaya De Silva, Kamindu Mendis, Niroshan Dickwella, Dinesh Chandimal, Ramesh Mendis, Chamika Karunaratne, Suminda Lakshan, Kasun Rajitha, Vishwa Fernando, Asitha Fernando, Dilshan Madushanka, Praveen Jayawickrama, Lasith Embuldeniya.

Monday, May 9, 2022 – 01:00











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