Spinner Maheesh Theekshana and batter Kusal Mendis have been ruled out of the ongoing T20I series against India due to hamstring injuries, Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) informed on Friday. But Mendis has been included in the 17-member Test squad for two Tests against India should he recover in time from the hamstring injury.
In place of the injured duo, Niroshan Dickwella and Dhananjaya De Silva have been drafted into the T20I squad. Mendis hasn’t featured in Tests since January 2021 and was ‘Player of the Match’ in the fifth T20I against Australia at Melbourne.
Theekshana has been one of the main bowlers for Sri Lanka in the first six overs. SLC also said that along with Theekshana, Wanindu Hasaranga will return home from Australia and will miss the T20I series against India as he hasn’t recovered yet from Covid-19.
Sri Lanka lost the opening T20I against India by 62 runs at Lucknow on Thursday. Both teams will now travel to Dharamsala for the second and third T20Is scheduled for Saturday and Sunday respectively.
Meanwhile, in the 17-member Test squad, off-spinner Ramesh Mendis hasn’t been included due to an injury. The Tests against India will also mark the last international assignment of senior pacer Suranga Lakmal, who had announced his retirement from playing for Sri Lanka across all formats after the conclusion of the series.
The members of the Test squad who aren’t participating in the T20Is left for India on Friday morning. “Playing India in India is not easy. We know in the past, we played in India and it was not going to be easy. But we have been playing really well in the past few years and have prepared really well. I think we can give it a good shot in India as well,” said Dimuth Karunaratne ahead of departure.
Squad: Dimuth Karunaratne (captain), Pathum Nissanka, Lahiru Thirimanne, Dhananjaya de Silva (vice-captain), Kusal Mendis (subject to fitness), Angelo Mathews, Dinesh Chandimal, Charith Asalanka, Niroshan Dickwella, Chamika Karunaratne, Lahiru Kumara, Suranga Lakmal, Dushmantha Chameera, Vishwa Fernando, Jeffrey Vandersay, Praveen Jayawickrema and Lasith Embuldeniya