Dhananjaya de Silva set to be part of Test series in the Caribbean
Less than two weeks after the tragic death of his father, following which he had decided to withdraw from Sri Lanka’s tour of the Caribbean, Dhananjaya de Silva has confirmed his participation in the three-Test series.
De Silva’s father, a politician, was shot dead in Rathmalana in Sri Lanka on 24 May, a day before the 26-year-old batsman was expected to leave with the rest of the touring party for the West Indies. At the time, it was understood that de Silva wouldn’t travel, but he has reversed his decision following the funeral.
The team management had not named a replacement for de Silva, one of the side’s best Test batsmen, and had left the door open for him to join the team at his convenience. He is expected to reach the West Indies on Monday, 4 June, with the first Test starting in Trinidad’s Port of Spain on 6 June.
De Silva has played 13 Tests, in which he has scored 1066 runs at an average of 46.34, with four centuries and two half-centuries. Two of those centuries have come in his last three Tests, 119* against India in New Delhi in the drawn Test in December 2017 and, in his very next Test appearance, 173 against Bangladesh in the high-scoring draw in Chittagong in January-February 2018.
Sri Lanka, at No.6 in the MRF Tyres ICC Test Team Rankings, go up against the Windies, ranked No.9, in Gros Islet and Bridgetown in the second and third Tests, all in June. They have never won a Test series in the Caribbean, losing 1-0 in 1997 and 2003 and drawing the two-Test series 1-1 in 2008.