Sri Lanka vs England: Dinesh Chandimal ruled out with injury; new captain announced

Sri Lanka vs England: Dinesh Chandimal ruled out with injury; new captain announced

Chandimal's replacement has also been announced.

Dinesh Chandimal
Dinesh Chandimal plays a shot. (Photo Source: Twitter)

Sri Lanka were in for another shocking news as their captain Dinesh Chandimal was ruled out from the ongoing Test series against England with a grade one tear. Vice-captain Suranga Lakmal will lead the side in their second Test match beginning in Pallekele on November 14. The hosts are trailing 0-1 in the three-match series after losing the first game in Colombo by 211 runs.

Chandimal, who scored 33 and 1 in the first Test, was replaced by young batting all-rounder Charith Asalanka. The 21-year-old was picked ahead of Kusal Perera and Lahiru Thirimanne, both of whom were on standby when the squad was announced. Chandimal, a veteran of 49 Tests, has led Sri Lanka in 13 Tests with four wins, five losses and four draws. Lakmal, on the other hand, has led his country thrice so far (all in 2018) and won each one of them.

The Sri Lankans lost the ODI series 1-3 and the one-off T20I against England so far and will need to tighten things if they aim to deny the Three Lions their first Test series win in Sri Lanka since 2000-01. England were clinical with their approach in the first Test, both with the bat and the ball, and debutant wicket-keeper Ben Foakes was chosen the Man of the Match for his century.

Charith Asalanka a bright prospect

Sri Lanka picked Asalanka possibly because of his recent performance in the two-day warm-up match in Colombo before the start of the series. The left-handed batsman scored an unbeaten 68 off 64 balls before retiring and his innings helped Sri Lanka Board XI go closer to England’s score of 210 for 6 in 50 overs.

Asalanka is yet to play for Sri Lanka at the international level but he has led the country’s U19 side in the 2016 World Cup. He also has over 20 wickets in first-class cricket besides 1,185 runs in 29 matches. Sri Lanka will also need to find a replacement for spinner Rangana Herath who retired after the first Test with 433 scalps.

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