By Vajira Dassanayake
An emotional Sri Lankan team will take on the touring Indians tomorrow at the Galle International Stadium where it’s greatest Son, Muttiah Muralidharan will be making his final appearance in Test match Cricket.
It was previously anticipated that the Sri Lankans would opt to take on the powerful batting line up of India with intimidating pace with the assistance of a green pitch. However, SLC’s Head of Coaching, Jerome Jayaratne hinted that a firm wicket devoid of any grass is awaiting the two teams in Galle.
This would most definitely prompt the Lankan’s to go with two specialist Fast Bowlers leaving a vacancy for a support spinner for Murali. If the team Management opts for that combination Rangana Herath would definitely be preferred considering his recent form in Test match Cricket. Chanaka Welagedara and Lasith Malinga are expected to open the Lankan attack with all rounder Angelo Mathews to feature as the third seamer.
However, A darker shade visible in the pitch may also mean moisture beneath the surface which may help the quick bowlers early in the game. Murali’s ability to use such conditions to his favor may well open up an opportunity for him to go for the 800 wicket mark.
Lasith Malinga’s return to Test match Cricket after a lapse of two and a half years can be seen as a blessing for the home team, as his reverse swinging ability at extreme pace will add a new dimension to the team.