Pacer Nuwan Pradeep named in SL A squad
Fast bowler Nuwan Pradeep has been named in Sri Lanka's A team for the forthcoming series against the touring New Zealand A side. Pradeep, who last played for Sri Lanka in January this year, had been sidelined with a back injury he suffered in March. Wicketkeeper-batsman Kaushal Silva, batsmen Kusal Perera, Kithuruwan Vithanage and Angelo Perera, and slow bowlers Seekkuge Prasanna and Akila Dananjaya are among the other high-profile inclusions in the 22-man squad.
Pradeep has played four Tests and two ODIs for Sri Lanka, his most recent game being the New Year Test against Australia. One of the fastest bowlers on the island, Pradeep's career has been constantly plagued by injury and he missed the A team's tour of West Indies after suffering an injury during Sri Lanka's first-class season.
Dimuth Karunaratne, who captained the side during that West Indies tour, has not been named in this squad, though he is part of Sri Lanka's preliminary squad for the tour of Zimbabwe. Silva, Vithanage and Prasanna are the other Test cricketers in the squad, while Dananjaya, Angelo Perera and Mahela Udawatte have played limited-overs matches for Sri Lanka.
Twenty-year-old offspinner Tharindu Kaushal, who took 55 wickets at 19.56 in his debut first-class season, is also in the A squad. He was a part of the Test squad for the last two home series in Sri Lanka but was not given a chance. Kaushal was also omitted from the 27-man preliminary squad for the Zimbabwe tour.
Sri Lanka A will play two four-day matches and three one-dayers against New Zealand A. The first-class matches will start on on September 17, and all five games on the tour will be split between Pallekele and Dambulla.
Sri Lanka A: Kithuruwan Vithanage, Kusal Perera, Kaushal Silva, Udara Jayasundera, Shehan Jayasuriya, Mahela Udawatte, Ashan Priyanjan, Angelo Perera, Danushka Gunathilaka, Sachithra Serasinghe, Niroshan Dickwella, Madura Lakmal, Lahiru Gamage, Nuwan Pradeep, Vimukthi Perera, Lahiru Jayaratne, Malinda Pushpakumara, Tharindu Kaushal, Chaturanga de Silva, Seekkuge Prasanna, Akila Dananjaya