Sri Lanka news September 13, 2013

Chandimal to lead against NZ A

Dinesh Chandimal will captain the Sri Lanka A side against New Zealand A in the first unofficial Test, which begins on September 17, with Dimuth Karunaratne to serve as his deputy.

Neither Chandimal nor Karunaratne were in the preliminary squad for the A tour, but with Sri Lanka's October tour of Zimbabwe since having been called off, both players will now have some match practice in what shapes to be a three-month break from international cricket.

Batsman Kusal Perera and 20-year-old offspinner Tharindu Kaushal are notable exclusions from the squad. Perera had starred in the first-class tournament early in the year, and had been part of Sri Lanka's limited-overs teams for much of the year, but has since encountered a lean patch.

Kaushal had also had a remarkable first-class season - his first - in which he took 50 wickets at 15.20. He had been named in two Sri Lanka Test squads without getting a game, but mediocre returns with the A team in the Caribbean has put him out of favour with the selectors.

The first-class tournament's top scorer, Kaushal Silva, and top wicket-taker, Malinda Pushpakumara, have both been named in the squad, with Kithuruwan Vithanage and Angelo Perera, who have played for Sri Lanka in the last six months, also earning call-ups. Fast bowler Nuwan Pradeep will continue his return from injury with the A team.

The first unofficial Test will be played in Pallekele, before the action moves to Dambulla. New Zealand A have been in India, where they lost the ODI series 3-0.

Sri Lanka A squad for the first unofficial Test: Dinesh Chandimal (c), Dimuth Karunaratne (vc), Angelo Perera, Kithuruwan Vithanage, Nuwan Pradeep, Kaushal Silva, Malinda Pushpakumara, Vimukthi Perera, Madura Lakmal, Ishan Jayaratne, Ashan Priyanjan, Udara Jayasundara, Sachithra Serasinghe, Chaturanga de Silva, Dilruwan Perera

Andrew Fidel Fernando is ESPNcricinfo's Sri Lanka correspondent. He tweets here

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  • Dummy4 on September 15, 2013, 13:43 GMT

    Well, I understand where selectors are coming from as far as Chandimal is concerned. But it is a bit weird for VC of the national team to be included in A team. Still I think selectors are correct and Chandimal has plenty to prove his credentials.

  • jared on September 14, 2013, 12:03 GMT

    @ bleedred. yeah you might be right after all india's depth is something most countries would envy, not sure if srilanka has the same depth of quality players but srilanka produce more quality players than nz, they also produce the most unorthidox cricketers in the world which makes them one of the most exciting to watch. so it may be a little easier than india but that doesn't mean we will win after all it is their home turf and nz players struggle with unorthidox cricket so i would say advantage srilanka A

  • Akshay on September 13, 2013, 15:14 GMT

    Talented players like Sohan Boralessa, Gayan Maneeshan, Tharindu Kaushal, Roshan Jayatissa,and Bhanuka Rajapakshe should also get a chance. The selectors keep missing these folks !

  • Android on September 13, 2013, 12:56 GMT

    it is good for SL cricket giving the international exposure to emerging young bloods without playing old horses and international players. Loosing to NZ A with those young players is far better than whitewashing them with capped players.

  • Clayton on September 13, 2013, 12:17 GMT

    It's exciting the NZ A side is getting so much game time. Future stars such as Corey Anderson and Cachopa are getting exposure to top class cricket, while Bracewell and Gillespie are gaining international form. This will bode well for the tour of Bangladesh and the tour by India. As an aside I'm finding the A tours almost as exciting as the Americas cup. Go team New Zealand! Destroy Oracle USA and bring the cup home. NZ technology and sailing skills to the fore. With th All Blacks dominating Australia (and soon South Africa as usual) this will be an exciting few months for New Zealand sports

  • midhun on September 13, 2013, 6:51 GMT

    new zealand a will have a much easier series against srilanka a compared to india a

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