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Kusal Perera replaces Dhammika Prasad in the Sri Lanka Test squad

Kusal Perera
Sri Lankan cricketer Kusal Perera. (Photo by LAKRUWAN WANNIARACHCHI/AFP/Getty Images)

Wicket-keeper batsman Kusal Perera has been called up to join the Sri Lankan Test squad as a replacement for the injured Dhammika Prasad. Perera will head to England as soon as his visa formalities are taken care of, the cricket Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) board said.

Prasad had missed the first Test against England, suffering from a shoulder injury. He has been called back to Sri Lanka to undergo further treatment. Sanath Jayasuriya, the chief selector, said Perera was chosen as a replacement for the bowler, as they had plenty of bowling options. “Kusal will join the team as soon as possible and acclimatise so he can do some serious work with the bat,”

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Perera, who played his last international match against India in August-September 2015 in a Test series, and was suspended for testing positive for a banned substance. The labs in Qatar came with the finding in one of his urine samples and they named him with the steroid that was found. But they recently withdrew that and said ‘we might have made a mistake’. But in the time, Perera missed Sri Lanka’s tour of New Zealand, a Twenty20 International series against India, the Asia Cup and the World Twenty20 tournaments.

Kumar Sangakkara had earlier backed Kusal Perera to be in the Sri Lankan squad for the Test series against England, Sangakkara said: “I hope they do because I think when you have gone through something like that, the best thing you can do is to be allowed to play cricket again.”

Sri Lanka had lost the first Test match against England at Headingley, Leeds by an innings and 88 runs. The second Test is scheduled to start on 27th May.

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