England in Sri Lanka 2012 - Sri Lanka 1st Test squad
Mahela Jayawardene (captain)
The most experienced member of the squad with more than 100 Tests to his name, the right-hander has been a fixture in Sri Lanka’s middle order for well over a decade. His average in excess of 50 speaks for itself, as does the fact he has scored more than 10,000 Test runs. Jayawardene was handed the captaincy for the second time in his career earlier this year following Tillakaratne Dilshan’s resignation.
A dependable batsman in the middle order where his unspectacular resilience is in contrast to the flair of those above him. The experienced right-hander averages well over 50 in Tests and put aside doubts over his ability to play outside the sub-continent with some impressive efforts in England and South Africa in the last year.
Having started his Test career as a middle-order batsman, Dilshan now opens - a position from which he is especially dangerous in home conditions - and still bowls occasional off-spin in addition to producing moments of brilliance in the field.
A tall left-hander, Paranavitana impressed with his patient approach at the top of the order in England last summer, but was dropped for the New Year Test against South Africa.
A bright all-round prospect with his left-handed batting and right-arm seam bowling. Thirimanne had appeared in five Tests prior to the series and is an option at the top of the order.
Along with Mahela Jayawardene, one of the classiest and most reliable batsmen in Sri Lanka's history, boasting more than 9,000 Test runs. Sangakkara is an accomplished wicketkeeper but has played as a specialist Test batsman - with great success - in recent times. He is an intelligent cricketer yet lacks nothing in terms of competitiveness.
The young batsman made his Test debut during Sri Lanka’s last series, against South Africa. Chandimal, who can also keep wicket, played the final two encounters, impressing with half-centuries in each innings on debut, and has since thrived in the one-day international arena.
Sri Lanka’s first-choice Test wicketkeeper. Injury meant Chandimal was given the nod for the final two Tests against South Africa. Jayawardene struck a century in the first encounter against England last summer.
Seamer Lakmal has struggled to make the desired impact since making his Test debut against West Indies in 2010. He bowled relatively impressively versus England last summer, though, and will be looking to improve upon his poor record.
A right-arm fast-medium bowler, Prasad was yet to make any real impact in Test cricket having appeared nine times before the series. He and Lakmal are rivals for the second seamer spot in Sri Lanka’s line-up.
Sri Lanka’s premier pace bowler, left-armer Welegedera has proved effective recently, most notably taking five wickets in the first innings of a recent victory over South Africa. He was Sri Lanka’s most prolific seamer in England last summer, despite only playing in two of the three Tests.
An off-spinner, Randiv was likely to be one of two spinners - alongside Rangana Herath - employed by Sri Lanka. He had taken 21 wickets in six Tests prior to the series.
Having stepped out of the shadow of the legendary Muttiah Muralitharan, who retired in 2010, Herath has emerged as the leader of Sri Lanka’s attack. The left-arm spinner possesses the ability to find substantial turn, but it is his nagging accuracy that makes him such a tricky customer, especially in home conditions.
After a four-year absence from Test cricket, Silva was recalled for the series on the back of a 163 against England in a tour match as well as some impressive domestic form. The right-handed batsman is stylish when in full flow, but has yet to prove himself as a consistent performer in the game’s premier form.