Sri Lanka all-rounder Asela Gunaratne has been ruled out of the ongoing India-Sri Lanka Test series owing to an injury that he sustained during the first session of the first Test in Galle. Arjun de Silva, a member of Sri Lanka's medical committee confirmed to Cricbuzz that Gunaratne will take no further part in the series.
Earlier in the day, he had been rushed to Colombo to receive treatment for his left thumb, which he injured while attempting a catch off Shikhar Dhawan's bat.
The incident happened in the 14th over of the 1st innings when a fullish delivery by Lahiru Kumara found Dhawan's outside edge, as the Indian looked to drive the ball on-the-up. The edge induced made the ball fly to the slip cordon, where Gunaratne, stationed at second slip, tried to latch on to it but failed.
Diving to his left, Gunaratne got his hands to the ball but got hit on the left thumb, which was already heavily strapped. Not only did he shell a catch, thereby giving Dhawan a reprieve of which the Indian left-hander made full use, but he also broke his thumb, as it has now been reported.
Dhananjaya de Silva, Sri Lanka's 12th man is out on the field to replace Gunaratne, but the greater cause of concern for the hosts is the unavailability of a batsman. Should India get a big total in the first innings, and they look set to score one at the moment, going at 4.47 runs per over, Sri Lanka might feel the vacuum left behind by one batsman.
This is the second injury concern for the hosts as their newly-appointed full-time captain Dinesh Chandimal has already been ruled out of the first Test owing to his failure to recover from pneumonia.
No clarity has prevailed on whether Chandimal or Gunaratne would be available for the second Test in Colombo that begins August 3.
While Sri Lanka try to find their feet with ten batsmen, India have been making merry of their bowling attack. Shikhar Dhawan scored his fifth Test century earlier in the day, which was soon followed by Cheteshwar Pujara's 12th Test hundred.
This is the first of the three Tests scheduled for the series, with the other two to be held in Colombo and Kandy from August 3 and August 12, respectively.
The tour also involved 5 ODIs and 1 T20I, with the ODIs to be played on August 20, 24, 27, 31 and September 3, in Dambulla, Kandy, and Colombo.
The one-off T20I would also be held in Colombo on September 6.Published 26 Jul 2017, 13:21 IST