GALLE: If form in South Asian conditions is difficult to discern ahead of this series, with so little Test cricket having been played here in the past year, Sri Lanka are throwing predictions into further disarray with their wounded and their injury returnees.
A day out from the first Test, (there’s still time to get injured), Angelo Mathews and Dinesh Chandimal look likely to be in the top order. But although batsman Oshada Fernando, and fast bowlers Suranga Lakmal and Lahiru Kumara have technically recovered from their injuries, they may not quite be match-ready enough to make the XI. Sri Lanka also lost both Tests against South Africa by large margins, so in normal circumstances you would expect them to be turning up low on morale.
And yet, they don’t seem to be beating themselves up about those losses much. At the end of that series, captain Dimuth Karunaratne was essentially of the view that when you have the appalling volume of injuries Sri Lanka suffered on that tour, losses such as those were bound to happen. It is what it is. Tomorrow is a new day. This ––- their first at home since August 2019 ––- is a new series.