Rangana Herath will be rested for the third Test at Pallekele after pulling up from the second Test with a stiff back. Two players will be further added to Sri Lanka’s squad to replace Herath and the already-injured Nuwan Pradeep.
“This is where our player management comes in, because we don’t want to break anyone,” SLC cricket manager Asanka Gurusinha said. “We made the call not to risk Herath because he’s also bowled close to 200 overs in the three Tests. That’s a lot for his body.” Herath also confirmed he will stay in Colombo and receive treatment, rather than traveling to Kandy with the team.
Herath is the fourth Sri Lanka player to become unavailable during the India series, after both Asela Gunaratne and Pradeep picked up injuries in the first and second Tests respectively, and Suranga Lakmal was ruled out by a back complaint. Herath is not in the habit of missing Tests, however. The last Sri Lanka match he missed had come more than two years ago – against Pakistan in July 2015 – and that was because he was dropped from the XI.