Sunday, 18 April 2021

Champions Trophy: Mathews likely to miss South Africa clash

Angelo Mathews

COLOMBO: Angelo Mathews, the Sri Lankan skipper, is unlikely to play against South Africa in his side’s Champions Trophy opener due to a calf injury, Sri Lanka Cricket confirmed Mathews complained of pain on his calf and as a result, the management wouldn’t want to take a risk on Saturday.

“Mathews had complained of stiffness and pain, prompting the team management to conduct radiographic investigations, which revealed a strain on the muscle,” SLC said in a release. “He will engage in supervised recovery over the next few days but will most likely sit out the first group stage match.”

If Mathews indeed does miss out, it will be a huge blow for the island nation, who are usually heavily dependent on the solidity he brings to the batting crease. After not playing international cricket since January due to a hamstring injury, Mathews featured in the IPL for Delhi Daredevils recently before joining his countrymen for the mega event.

He immediately shot back to form with a trademark 95 against Australia but skipped his side’s next practice game against New Zealand. Opener Upul Tharanga, who led in Mathews’s absence in limited-overs cricket, is likely to take over the mantle yet again on Saturday against South Africa.

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