England in Sri Lanka 2014-15 December 9, 2014

Herath injury allows Senanayake instant return

Rangana Herath has taken seven wickets in the ODI series © AFP

Rangana Herath has been ruled out of the fifth ODI against England, and is unlikely to play a further part in the series, after pulling a hamstring in his left thigh during Tuesday's fielding practice. Offspinner Sachithra Senanayake - who was cleared to bowl again earlier in the day - will immediately take Herath's place in the squad, and may even play against England on Wednesday.

Herath's injury has not yet been fully assessed, and as such, the full extent of damage will not be known until late tomorrow. However, team manager Michael de Zoysa said it was unlikely he would play again in the ongoing series. The injury also puts him in doubt for the first Test against New Zealand, which begins on December 26, but he was unsure of playing that game in any case, thanks to separate personal reasons.

Senanayake had bowled 10 overs in a List-A match in Panagoda - near Colombo - on Tuesday, and will now travel to join the team in Kandy, in the evening. De Zoysa said Senanayake will be considered for a place in the XI for Wednesday's match.

The loss of Herath is a blow to Sri Lanka, who have relied on him during the middle overs. He has seven wickets at an average of 25 in the series. Senanayake also comes into the side in some bowling form, however, having taken five wickets in three List A matches over the past week.

Sri Lanka lead the seven-match series 3-1, with two games at Pallekele and one in Colombo, to play.

Andrew Fidel Fernando is ESPNcricinfo's Sri Lanka correspondent. @andrewffernando

Comments