Mathews injured, Herath set to make captaincy debut against Zimbabwe

Johannesburg [South Africa], Oct.24 : Sri Lanka skipper Angelo Mathews has pulled out of next month's tour to Zimbabwe due to a calf injury.

In his absence, veteran spinner Rangana Herath will lead the squad for the two-match Test series against Zimbabwe, starting on October 29 in Harare.

Herath will become the oldest player to lead a Test team for the first time since Somachandra de Silva in 1983.

"Sri Lanka Cricket is pleased to announce that veteran spinner Rangana Herath will lead the 15-man squad in the two-match Test series against Zimbabwe commencing October 29 in Harare," a statement issued by the board said, and was reported by Sport24.

Although the Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) did not reveal the reason behind Mathews' withdrawal, the official sources confirmed that a recurring calf injury forced him to rest ahead of the three-match Test series against South Africa starting late December.

The 29-year-old skipper has now joined his deputy Dinesh Chandimal, who was also sidelined because of a thumb injury he sustained during a domestic match last month.

With the withdrawal of these premium players, Lanka have brought in three new faces in the squad against Zimbabwe--fast bowlers Kasun Madushanka and Lahiru Kumara and all-rounder Asela Gunaratne.

Source: ANI