Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) on Wednesday announced the return of Sanath Jayasuriya as the chief selector, a little more than a year since he stepped down from the post.
The new selection committee will start its operation on May 1 and will serve for two-year term. The four-member panel comprises wicketkeeper-batsman Romesh Kaluwitharana, former offspinner Ranjith Madurasinghe and former fast bowler Eric Upashantha, besides Jayasuriya.
Kaluwitharana, who formed the destructive opening partnership with Jayasuriya in the 1996 World Cup victory, was Sri Lanka 'A' team coach for a number of years, while Madurasinghe, a Test player in the 80s, has served before on the panel, and Upashantha was a member of the national team in the late 90s. The previous selection panel was headed by Aravinda de Silva.
SLC had asked for reinstating Jayasuriya as chief selector for several weeks, but was awaiting the Sports Minister's approval. The new committee was formed as soon as SLC got the green signal from the Sports Ministry.
Jayasuriya had earlier held the post from January 2013 to March 2015. (PTI)
Sri Lanka names 17 players for England: Two uncapped all-rounders in Test squad
Two uncapped all-rounders were named in Sri Lanka’s 17-member Test squad picked for the tour of England yesterday.
Dhananjaya de Silva a right-hand bat and off-break bowler and Dasun Shanaka, right-hand bat and right-arm medium bowler both aged 24 are the two newcomers to the Test side.
They have both appeared for Sri Lanka in T20 internationals – De Silva in 2 and Shanaka in 10 that includes the recently concluded World T20 in India.
The team lacks experience in batting which will be severely tested in English conditions with skipper Angelo Mathews with 56 Test caps as the most experienced batter. The rest have not played more than 25 Tests.
Sri Lanka who are undergoing are period of transition are due to play a series of three Tests, the first two up in the north of England at Leeds and at Durham where the temperatures can be cold and clammy and the conditions suited for swing and seam bowling. The third and final Test will be played at Lord’s London.
Sri Lanka has named five fast-medium bowlers headed by experienced Dhammika Prasad in their bowling unit which sees the return of Shaminda Eranga who hasn’t played for his country since January 2015 due to a series of injuries that has affected his career.
The two spinners who make up the bowling unit are Rangana Herath and Dilruwan Perera. There is no place for promising young leg-spinner Jeffrey Vandersay.
The national selectors have named Dimuth Karunaratne, Kaushal Silva and Kusal Mendis as openers. Silva gains selection after recovering from a blow on the back of his head in a practice match played at Pallekele.
Vice-captain Dinesh Chandimal will be the first choice wicket-keeper with Niroshan Dickwella as his deputy.
The middle order will be manned by Lahiru Thirimanne, Chandimal, Mathews and Milinda Siriwardana and looks pretty insecure in the absence of retired legends Mahela Jayawardene and Kumar Sangakkara.
Tamil Union who emerged Premier league champions for 2015-16 contribute four players to the Test squad – all bowlers.
The team is due to leave for England on May 4 and play two warm-up first-class matches against Essex and Leicestershire before commencing the Test series against England at Leeds on May 19.
Sri Lanka won a Test series for the first time in England (1-0) on their last tour in 2014.