Sri Lanka will be glad that they will have the services of two of their most experienced players for the upcoming tour of West Indies after senior batsman Angelo Mathews and seamer Suranga Lakmal passed their fitness tests.
Both players were picked in the squads named last week, but their participation was subject to fitness. Both players’ match fitness was assessed during an eight-day residential training camp in Kandy that concluded on Wednesday.
The two players had been medically cleared earlier this month, but their match fitness was assessed in Kandy.
Mathews, who returned early from the tour of Bangladesh in January having hurt his hamstring was out of cricket for four months and had to miss the Nidahas Trophy. The 30-year-old had recovered from the hamstring injury and then during preparation for the Nidahas Trophy, he hurt his calf.
Lakmal, meanwhile, suffered a side strain and missed the Inter-Provincial First Class tournament. He was supposed to lead the Galle side.
Lakmal will spearhead the Sri Lankan attack but he is expected to play only two of the three Tests as Sri Lanka’s selectors are concerned about his workload. Veteran spinner Rangana Herath is also expected to play only two Tests.
Left-handed batsman Kusal Janith Perera had hurt his left thumb during training in Kandy on Wednesday but he is believed to be out of danger.
Sri Lanka will travel to West Indies later this month and will play a three-day warm-up game in Trinidad before the first Test that gets underway in Port of Spain on the 6th of June. The second Test will be played in St. Lucia followed by the final game in Barbados. The third Test will be a pink ball day-night affair.
Sri Lanka last played a Test series in West Indies ten years ago. They are yet to win a Test series in the Caribbean. The tourists will be carrying 17 players in their squad as cover for those players who are expected to play only two Tests.
Sri Lanka squad: Dinesh Chandimal (C), Mahela Udawatte, Kusal Mendis, Kusal Janith Perera, Dhananjaya de Silva, Roshen Silva, Angelo Mathews, Niroshan Dickwella, Rangana Herath, Dilruwan Perera, Akila Dananjaya, Jeffrey Vandersay, Lahiru Gamage, Kasun Rajitha, Suranga Lakmal, Lahiru Kumara, Asitha Fernando