Cricket Article

Zimbabwe v Sri Lanka 1st Test preview & live

Zimbabwe v Sri Lanka 1st Test preview & live Photo: TT

Zimbabwe and Sri Lanka face each other in the first of a two match Test series at the Harare Sports Club, starting on Saturday.

This will be the first time that the two countries have played each other in Test cricket since 2004, when Sri Lanka toured the African country and registered two overwhelming innings victories.

Overall, the sides have played 15 Tests in opposition, with Sri Lanka winning 10 and the other five fixtures being drawn.

Zimbabwe have named three uncapped players in their 16-man squad for the series, with quick bowlers Tendai Chatara and Tinashe Panyangara both unavailable through injury.

The uncapped seamer Carl Mumba and batsman Tarisai Musakanda both earn selection after appearing for the “A” side against Pakistan “A” earlier this month.

Chris Mpofu is recalled to the squad after a five year absence. In his previous nine Test appearances his 20 wickets have cost nearly 45 runs each. His recall would appear to be purely the result of the injuries to Chatara and Panyangara.

Sri Lanka arrive on the back of their stunning 3-0 series win against Australia, a result that knocked the Baggy Green tops from the top of the ICC’s Test rankings, but with a much depleted side.

Captain, Angelo Matthews has been ruled out with a leg injury, and is also doubtful for the tri-series that follows the Test series, which also involves the West Indies.

Also missing from the touring squad through injury are the vice-captain Dinesh Chandimal who is still recovering from surgery to a fix a thumb injury, along with fast bowlers Dhammika Prasad, Nuwan Pradeep and Dushmantha Chameera.

The team will be led in Matthews absence by Rangana Herath, while his place in the squad is taken by batsman Upul Tharanga. Herath will be just the second bowler to captain Sri Lanka in a Test series.

Rajeev mcallister
Sports Pundit staff writer

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