Injured Tillakaratne Dilshan out of BlackCaps ODI series
Tillakaratne Dilshan (Reuters file)
By Krishnan Francis
Prolific Sri Lanka opener Tillakaratne Dilshan has a back injury and will not play in the remaining two one-day internationals against New Zealand.
Captain Mahela Jayawardene said the management decided to rest Dilshan, who has a minor disk-related problem. He will not play in the last two matches of the series at Mahinda Rajapaksa Stadium in Hambantota.
Batsman Chamara Kapugedera replaced him in the squad.
The opener braved back pain and slammed an unbeaten 102 in leading Sri Lanka to a seven-wicket win under the Duckworth/Lewis method in the third match on Tuesday.
The win gave Sri Lanka an unassailable 2-0 lead in the five-match series with the first game being washed out.
Jayawardene said his team would miss Dilshan's "allround package" – his flamboyant batting at the top order, economical offspin bowling and agile fielding.
"It's not too bad," Jayawardene said on the injury. "With adequate rest it will heal naturally."
Though Kapugedera was selected, Dinesh Chandimal was expected to make the playing XI.
A win will enable Sri Lanka to wrap up the series, and Jayawardene said his concern was not only a series win but also adjusting to the International
Cricket Council's new field restriction rules which he has already criticized as heavily favouring the batsmen.
Jayawardene said the new rule to have a maximum four fielders in the outfield even outside powerplay overs could kill the spinners' attacking instincts.
He said he will write to the ICC at the end of the series expressing his views.