Sri Lanka announce Test squad for 2011 tour to England

By Staff Writers

Selectors include Dinesh Chandimal, Lahiru Thirimanne, Nuwan Pradeep and Thisara Perera, who are yet to make their Test debuts, while Lasith Malinga writes in from India, claiming that he is unfit to play Test cricket but fit enough for the rigours of the lucrative IPL.

TM Dilshan
Tillakaratne Dilshan to lead Sri Lanka in England. AFP PHOTO/ Ishara S.KODIKARA.

April 20, 2011 (Island Cricket): Sri Lankan selectors have included four players who are yet to make their Test debut for the upcoming tour to England. Dinesh Chandimal, Lahiru Thirimanne, Nuwan Pradeep and Thisara Perera are yet to play a Test match for Sri Lanka.

Chandima and Thirimanne, both 21, are seen as two of Sri Lanka’s finest upcoming batsmen. And Pradeep, 24, is capable of reaching speeds above 140 KM/H, with a low arm action in the mould of Lasith Malinga.

Perera is a regular feature in Sri Lanka’s limited overs side. His medium pace, coupled with his hard hitting lower down the order, will provide more options for the islanders, who are missing key all-rounder Angelo Mathews due to injury.

Malinga fit for Mumbai not for Sri Lanka

Meanwhile, Duleep Mendis, chairman of the new selection panel, said that Lasith Malinga has requested that he be left out of the Test series.

Speaking to Island Cricket earlier this year, Malinga pointed to his knee as the reason for avoiding the five-day version of the game. According to both Malinga and physio Tommy Simsek, subjecting Malinga to five days of Test Cricket could curtail his career.

“It looks a bit awkward that he says that he is injured and continues to play cricket,” Mendis said of Malinga’s decision to avoid playing Test cricket for Sri Lanka, but feature in 14 Twenty20 matches (Apr 10 – May 22) for his Indian Premier League team, Mumbai Indians.

“When a player says he is injured we want him to undergo a rehabilitation program immediately without playing cricket,” Mendis added.

Similarly, also frustrated by Malinga’s stance, Mendis’ predecessor Aravinda de Silva introduced right-arm speedster Shaminda Eranga, who had only recently taken up professional cricket, to Sri Lanka’s Test squad last November to infuse youth into Sri Lanka's dwindling pace bowling stocks, when Malinga was unavailable for the Test series against West Indies.

“In Malinga's case we have even promoted him to the top category in the player contracts, but he is not fit enough to play Test cricket,” a frustrated de Silva told reporters back in January.

Newly appointed captain Tillakaratne Dilshan will lead a 16-man squad that consists of four fast bowlers and three spinners. But Sri Lanka will miss the retired Muttiah Muralitharan, who has single-handedly helped Sri Lanka dominate over England in English conditions in the past.

Squad: Tillakaratne Dilshan (captain), Tharanga Paranavithana, Kumar Sangakkara, Mahela Jayawardene, Thilan Samaraweera, Dinesh Chandimal, Lahiru Thirimanne, Prasanna Jayawardene (wicket-keeper), Thisara Perera, Suraj Randiv, Ajantha Mendis, Rangana Herath, Dilhara Fernando, Chanaka Welegedara, Suranga Lakmal, Nuwan Pradeep.

Fixtures: Sri Lanka tour to England 2011 - Schedule

©Island Cricket


CrikFan's picture

Something SLC has to think of is not to "BURN OUT" their players, Malinga is already having injury problems encountered previously. Bowling 4overs which is done in 2 spells during the IPL and bowling 20-30 overs a day is totally different.

Malinga is a KEY for SLC, so it does mean he MUST PLAY EVERY FORMAT !!!!

Give others a chance to represent the country,Why isn't speedster Shaminda Eranga included in the Test squad and only Nuwan Pradeep?

Why is SLC depending on MALINGA ??? What happened to the Nuwan Kulasekara who was ranked top in the ODI bowlers ranking, Thilan Thushara ????

Sulaimaan's picture
Member since:
3 December 2010
Last activity:
1 year 12 weeks

Confused selections - 3 spinners to England and 4 erratic fast bowlers.Kulasekara should have replaced one of the fast bowlers or Perera given the control he has over his bowling.Tharanga too could have been given a chance due to his form in the ODI format.

Anonymous's picture

its a good thing chamara silva and kapuwa is not included at least...but what happen to upul tharanga...this squad looks betta than the wc squad we had ...of course with murali...ara kala kani denna silva and kapu nathi nisa

CrikFan's picture
Member since:
20 April 2011
Last activity:
3 years 5 weeks

he fast bowling line up looks a bit in-experienced apart from Dilhara(35 Tests,90 wickets). Nuwan Kulasekara and Thilan Thushara should have been also considered, apart from that its SOLID TEAM with new BLOOD in it.

Marcian's picture
Member since:
8 December 2010
Last activity:
1 year 11 weeks

The squad looks okay to me but what is the rational in taking three spinners to England? Its early summer with the ball darting around off the pitch. I thought Shaminda Eranga was ahead of Nuwan Pradeep and Welegedera in the pecking order - he would have been ideal for English conditions.

The batting looks fine with the inclusion of Thirimanne and Chandimal.

Anonymous's picture

Sachithra Senanayake should be in the squad. This guy has been performing really well for the past couple of years at the domestic level and 'A' tours, unfortunate not to catch the eye of selectors.

SunJ's picture
Member since:
25 January 2010
Last activity:
4 years 15 weeks

^There some talk about his action,people say thats the reason hes not in the selection fray

Anonymous's picture

What abt youngsters like Banuka, Ramitha , Upual Tharanga and Sachithra Senanayake

suhair's picture

Dilhara is waste this is not your house problem,you decide bring back mahroof in to the team he is great,Why Sana you all have forgotten the past sana should play in ODI sure if you give him the chance 1000%he make century with in 5 matches

dond's picture

what about Kaushal Silva?

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