Thisara signs on for Blast

Sri Lanka allrounder Thisara Perera has signed up for Gloucestershire for the Natwest T20 Blast later this season.

The burly Sri Lankan replaces Gloucestershire’s second overseas professional for the tournament, Australia fast bowler Andrew Tye.

Tye suffered a shoulder injury in May while playing in the Indian Premier League where he had great success with his knuckle ball slower ball variation.

Perera has been in and out of the Sri Lanka team in recent times but has extensive experience in T20 leagues having turned out for the Melbourne Renegades in the 2016/17 season and representing no fewer than five IPL franchises.

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A hard-hitting lower-order batsman and cunning seam bowler Perera adds depth to both batting and bowling stocks.

Perera struck a vital fifty in the third ODI against Bangladesh earlier this year but misfired in the Champions Trophy leading to his omission from the Sri Lanka squad to face Zimbabwe in a five match ODI series.

The left-hander is known for his ability to attack spinners in the middle overs but has a weakness against quality pace bowling.

Western Australia batsman Cameron Bancroft is the county’s other overseas player for the summer, playing in all three formats of the game.

Another Australian, and Big Bash winner with the Perth Scorchers, Michael Klinger will lead the team in the Blast competition.

Gloucestershire open their T20 Blast campaign against Middlesex in Cheltenham on 7 July.