Toss Sri Lanka Elected to bat vs Pakistan
Sri Lanka opted to bat in the series opener at Galle for the two-Test series. As the Galle surface gets progressively more rutted as the game progresses, Pakistan will have to steel themselves to bat last on the poor surface.
“Then we know what it’s going to be like – it keeps changing – so we want to get the best out of the batting situation,” was Sri Lanka captain Dimuth Karunaratne’s reasoning for the decision.
In terms of team news, there are no surprises for the hosts. They will go with two seamers in Kasun Rajitha and Vishwa Fernando, while Prabat Jayasuriya and Ramesh Mendis will be the primary spin bowling options.
As for the pitch, it should be good for batting on days 1 and 2, though there will be an expected turnaround on days 4 and 5. However, hopefully there will be something in it for the seamers on a windy first morning.
Sri Lanka: 1 Dimuth Karunaratne (Captain), 2 Nishan Madushka, 3 Kusal Mendis, 4 Angelo Mathews, 5 Dinesh Chandimal, 6 Dhananjaya De Silva, 7 Sadira Samarawickrama (WK), 8 Ramesh Mendis, 9 Prabat Jayasuriya, 10 Kasun Viswam, 10 Kasun 11 Fernando
Pakistan: 1 Abdullah Shafiq, 2 Imam-ul-Haq, 3 Shan Masood, 4 Babar Azam (Captain), 5 Sarfaraz Ahmed (UK), 6 Saud Shakeel, 7 Agha Salman, 8 Nauman Ali, 9 Naseem Shah, 10 Abrar Ahmed, 11 Shaheen Shah Afridi