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Rangana Herath will be rested for the third Test at Pallekele after pulling up from the second Test with a stiff back.

Two players will be added to Sri Lanka’s squad to replace Herath and the already-injured Nuwan Pradeep.

Though there is no injury to Herath as such, he has had a heavy workload over the past three weeks, in which he bowled 71.1 overs in the one-off Test against Zimbabwe, as well as a combined 91 overs in the two Tests against India.

Selectors decided to leave him out after taking into consideration that Sri Lanka will play a Test series against Pakistan over the next two months.

SLC cricket manager Asanka Gurusinha said “This is where our player management comes in, because we don’t want to break anyone.

We made the call not to risk Herath because he’s also bowled close to 200 overs in the three Tests. That’s a lot for his body.”

Herath also confirmed he will stay in Colombo and receive treatment, rather than traveling to Kandy with the team.

Herath is the third Sri Lanka player to become unavailable during the India series, after both Asela Gunaratne and Pradeep picked up injuries in the first and second Tests respectively.

The Pallekele Test is scheduled to begin this Saturday with India having already won the series 2-0.

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