Uncapped Fernando to replace injured Prasad
Uncapped left-arm seamer Vishwa Fernando has been named as a replacement for the injured Dhammika Prasad in Sri Lanka's Test squad for the two-match series in New Zealand. Prasad sustained a back injury during the tour game against New Zealand Board President's XI in Queenstown, where he bowled only four overs for 20 runs.
Fernando has featured in Sri Lanka's Test squads to the UAE and Bangladesh in 2014 and was also picked in the squad for the home series against India in August this year, but did not get a game.
Fernando was the second-highest wicket taker for Sri Lanka A with five wickets in two matches, behind legspinner Jeffrey Vandersay in the two unofficial Tests against New Zealand A in October. He had come into prominence after claiming 40 wickets in nine Premier League tournament matches, Sri Lanka's first-class competition, in the 2014-15 season at 21.97.
Meanwhile, Prasad's injury comes as a significant blow to Sri Lanka. He had been their most penetrative seamer in the past year and was expected to lead the attack in New Zealand. Prasad is unlikely to regain fitness in time for the ODI series, for which he was named in Sri Lanka's squad.
Fernando has been named as a Test replacement only, for now, but Sri Lanka have made tentative plans to keep him in New Zealand for the ODIs as well.