Srilankan allrounder Milinda Siriwardana is all set to lead the Srilankan XI side against the touring Australians in the 3-day warm-up match starting in Colombo on Monday .
The team comprises the recent Test debutant and bowling allrounder Dasun Shanaka in their ranks and the veteran Dilhara Fernando. The selection of Fernando proves the sorry condition of Srilankan bowling at this point of time.
Dusmantha Chameera and Dhamika Prasad are virtually ruled from the upcoming test series due to injuries, Shaminda Eranga has been suspended due to illegal bowling and Lakmal will have to pass the fitness test on Monday to confirm his availability . This situation leaves only Nuwan Pradeep as the only fast bowling option fully fit and available for the series.
Siriwardana made his Test debut for Sri Lanka against Pakistan at the Rangiri International Stadium in Dambulla on October 2015. Prior to his Test debut, he has been a centurion against the same opposition in the tour match .
He has performed reasonably so far in the Test arena bagging one man of the match in his 5 outings. He has been a useful bowler too But since the arrival of Sanath Jayasuriya as their chief selector,he has been in and out of the side. An impressive show in the upcoming practice match will make it difficult for the selectors to leave him out.
The warm up match will be the only practice match the tourists will play before the start of the first Test on July 26.
In the opposing camp, David Warner has been ruled out of the warm up match after sustaining a neck injury in training. However, there have been no serious doubts cast on his availability for the Test series.
Sri Lankan XI: Madawa Warnapura, Osanda Fernando, Manoj Sarathchandra (wk), Asela Gunarathna, Shehan Jayasuriya, Milinda Siriwardana (capt), Dasun Shanaka, Chathuranga Silva, Nisala Tharaka, Vimukthi Perera, Dilhara Fernando