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Sri Lanka vs England: Rangana Herath to call it quits after the first Test

Herath has 430 Test wickets to his name after 92 matches.

Rangana Herath
Rangana Herath of Sri Lanka. (Photo by Dave Thompson/Getty Images)

Sri Lankan cricket is in dire straits ever since the legendary Kumar Sangakkara and Mahela Jayawardene have retired. They have been struggling immensely across all the three formats and more so in the ODIs. At home at least, they are doing well in the Tests. But soon everything can change in that aspect as well. Their premier spinner and the veteran Rangana Herath has decided to retire from the game after the first of the three-match Test series against England.

Herath, 40, had earlier indicated that England series could be his last but one felt that he will be available for all the three matches of the series. Galle will host his last match, the same venue where the left-arm spinner had made his Test debut a whopping 19 years ago.

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Herath filled Murali’s void

Rangana Herath, the owner of 430 Test scalps, had to spend a large part of his career under Muttiah Muralitharan’s shadow having made his debut back in 1999. But once the legend retired after picking 800 wickets, Herath took over and never let the team miss Murali’s presence with his wily left-arm spin. Of the 92 Tests he has played in his career so far, he played only 22 of them during the period between his debut and July 2010.

Herath’s retirement will once again leave a huge void in Sri Lanka‘s bowling department now. While there are the likes of Akila Dananjaya and Lakshan Sandakan who have risen over the last couple of years. But they haven’t been tested enough in whites at the highest level. Dilruwan Perera though has been one of the best spinners for the team and the responsibility will be on him to carry the legacy forward.

Rangana Herath’s last Test match will commence on November 6 and the hosts will be keen to give him a winning sendoff and hope that he wins the game for one final time much like he has done throughout his career. Herath currently has 34 five-wicket hauls and 9 10-wicket match-hauls in his career and would love to add more to the tally before bowing out.

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