Sri Lanka are set to make several changes with Dimuth Karunaratne and Kusal Mendis to miss out for the Second Test against England in Galle starting on Friday.
Mendis has been in poor form and is set to be axed, with Oshada Fernando and Ramesh Mendis or Dasun Shanaka set to come into the XI.
Sri Lanka’s chief selector Ashantha de Mel said: “Most probably the second Test line up will comprise Kusal Perera, Lahiru Thirimanne, Oshada Fernando, Angelo Mathews, Dinesh Chandimal, Niroshan Dickwella, and there will be a toss up for number five position between all-rounder Dasun Shanaka and debutant off-spinning middle-order batsman Ramesh Mendis.
“Remaining players will be Dilruwan Perera, Lasith Embuldeniya, Asitha Fernando, Suranga Lakmal or Wanindu Hasaranga. I believe the team will do well in the upcoming second Test.”
While Joe Root received plenty of plaudits for his double century in the First Test, fast bowler Stuart Broad was outstanding with three early first innings wickets, while he proved tough for the hosts to get away.
Broad bowled 11 maidens from 17 overs in the second innings, going for only 14 runs as the Sri Lankans struggled with his quality pace.
“We all know what kind of a bowler Broad is - he’s taken over 500 Test wickets and he’s one of the best fast bowlers going around,” Mathews said.
“On any kind of surface, the wicket was not offering anything for the fast bowlers, but he was moving the ball.
“One spell I felt like I was playing in England against him because he was moving the ball. That’s very difficult for a fast bowler to do in these conditions in Galle.”
Mathews said they could learn from Root’s double century but encouraged his teammates to bat their own way.
“It’s not about being conservative. You always have to look to score runs,” he said.
“But you need to understand how you can score runs off these bowlers and in these conditions.”