Sri Lanka dealt Super League blow as Avishka Fernando comes down with COVID-19
Sri Lanka opener Avishka Fernando is set to be ruled out of the upcoming Cricket World Cup Super League ODIs against Zimbabwe after testing positive for COVID-19.
Fernando delivered a positive test for the virus just before the team was set to gather in their bio-secure environment.
The swashbuckling opener will now be sent into isolation, while extra testing will take place before the squad is allowed to gather.
According to information furnished by Sri Lanka Cricket’s medical staff, Fernando has received three COVID-19 vaccination shots.
Fernando had received his second booster shot just days before testing positive fo the virus.
He is not demonstrating any symptoms and there is little reason for concern for the player’s wellbeing at this stage.
Kusal Mendis, Niroshan Dickwella, and Danushka Gunathilaka have been allowed to return to the fold as their sanctions from Sri Lanka Cricket over a pay dispute have been lifted.
Fernando has been a shining light for Sri Lanka in white ball cricket in recent months though, and his absence could be keenly felt against a dangerous Zimbabwe side.
Zimbabwe led by Craig Ervine
Craig Ervine will captain Zimbabwe during the three-match ODI series in Sri Lanka.
Ervine has once again been entrusted with the responsibility to lead Zimbabwe after he skippered the Chevrons on their limited-overs tour to Ireland and Scotland in August-September last year.
Wicketkeeper Clive Madande and opening batter Takudzwanashe Kaitano are included in a Zimbabwe squad for the first time, while allrounder Tino Mutombodzi has earned a recall.
Experienced middle-order batters Sikandar Raza and Sean Williams will form a strong spine for the tourists, while Zimbabwe continue to adjust to life without arguably their best player of the modern era in Brendan Taylor, who retired from international cricket in August.
The last time the two sides played an ODI series, Zimbabwe stunned the hosts, famously winning a five-match series 3-2. That series remains the only multi-game ODI series Zimbabwe have won in Asia.
The three matches against Sri Lanka will take place on January 16, 18 and 21 with the Pallekele International Cricket Stadium in Kandy playing host.
Australia tour to Pakistan: Pace attack could be boosted
Australia are likely to include a raft of pace bowlers in their squad for the scheduled tour to Pakistan in March.
South Africa vs India: Keegan Petersen still coming to terms with stardom
New South Africa batting star Keegan Petersen has not quite gotten his head around his newfound fame.
Ashes reaction: Kevin Pietersen backs Joe Root and coach Chris Silverwood
Former England captain Kevin Pietersen has backed current captain Joe Root and coach Chris Silverwood to remain in charge of the team.
England Test team: ECB investigating after police called to Ashes drinks following Hobart Test
Players and staff from both the Australian and English teams were at the event.
Rassie van der Dussen relished India banter in tough Test series
The series between South Africa and India rode on a knife-edge.
India in South Africa: Jasprit Bumrah philosophical on leadership changes
Coach Ravi Shastri and skipper Virat Kohli have departed recently.
Broad and company: It’s our combined Ashes comedy XI
Everyone loves a combined XI at the end of the series; ours is a little different/better.
England Test team: Coach Chris Silverwood unsure what future holds after Ashes
England lost 4-0 Down Under.
Racism in cricket: ECB to give update to DCMS committee in January
The DCMS committee has recommended public funding to cricket be limited if it does not make sufficient progress on racism.
Women’s Ashes: Lisa Keightley admits England are ‘still rusty’ ahead of bid to regain the Urn
The multi-format series was brought forward by a week and will start with three T20 matches at the Adelaide Oval.