The Sri-Lanka senior national test squad jetted in Harare yesterday for a two-match test series against hosts Zimbabwe starting this Sunday.
By Lewin Zoe, Harare
Zimbabwe last played test cricket in 2018 when they drew 1-1 with Bangladesh and this will be their first international outing after being suspended by the International Cricket Council (ICC) last year over various issues.
The Asia side is coming on the back end of a 1-0 lost o Pakistan and will be buoyed by the availability of their senior players.
Sri Lanka holds the urge against Zimbabwe having won 15 of the 18t test matches between the two teams while five matches have been drawn and the hosts are yet to win a test series.
Since the 2004/5 season, both teams have met five times in test cricket and Sri-Lanka has won all the matches.
Zimbabwe came close to beating Sri-Lanka in 2017 but Niroshan Dickwella and Asela Gunaratne denied the visitors the chance by winning the match by four wickets after a record four innings chase of 388 in the sub-continent nation.
Looking at the squads – Sri-Lanka has gone for experience with Angelo Matthews, Denish Chandimal and Suranga Lakmal all in the travelling squad.
One major surprise from Sri-Lanka is Kusal Perera who has been dropped whilst the bulk of the players who made history in South Africa have been retained.
The hosts have gone for a mixed bag of experience; youth and current form.
One major exclusion is Tendai Chatara who is nursing an injury and is expected to be fit for the next assignment away to Bangladesh later next month.
Victor Nyauchi, Kevin Kasuza, Brian Mudzinganyama and Charlton Tshuma are expected to make their test debuts under the leadership of new captain Sean Williams who is taking reigns following the retirement of veteran Hamilton Masakadza who led the nation during its last test assignment.