Sri Lanka have been hit by another injury blow with Dimuth Karunaratne, the left-hand batsman, suffering a broken finger to end his World Cup, the team announced on Friday (March 6).
The International Cricket Council has approved Seekkuge Prasanna, the legspinner, as his replacement.
Prasanna is already with the team in Sydney – he came in as cover for the injured Rangana Herath – and has be directly drafted into the squad after the ICC technical committee approved the replacement.
He has played 22 One-Day Internationals for Sri Lanka, scoring 181 runs and taking 21 wickets. His last appearance for the team was earlier this year against New Zealand in Wellington.
“Dimuth Karunaratne broke a bone in his right hand during practice today,” said a Sri Lankan release earlier. The injury is expected to keep him out for a month.
The release had added that Kusal Janith Perera would leave Sri Lanka for Australia to be on standby.
The injury is the latest setback for Sri Lanka, coming just two days before the team’s crunch game against Australia at the Sydney Cricket Ground. Herath, the spinner, also needed stitches in his left hand after being hurt in the game against England. Jeevan Mendis, the allrounder, picked up a hamstring injury after playing the first two games and had to drop out of the squad.
Karunaratne had a low-key World Cup, making 14 in the loss against New Zealand and 23 in the victory over Afghanistan. He didn’t get a chance to bat in the two crushing victories against Bangladesh and England.
After their game against Australia on Sunday, Sri Lanka play their final Pool A fixture against Scotland three days later.