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Welegedara has not played limited overs cricket since June 2010
Sri Lanka pace bowler Dilhara Lokuhettige is set to replace injured seamer Chanaka Welegedara for the Champions Trophy in England since Welegedara is still yet to sufficiently recover from an ankle injury he sustained on May 18.
However, Lokuhettige will not be able to be part of the Sri Lankan Champions Trophy squad until the International Cricket Council (ICC) approve the switch.
Lokuhettige, 32, represented Sri Lanka in eight ODIs in 2005 and two Twenty20 Internationals in 2008 and was recently selected to replace Welegedara due to his outstanding performances at the domestic level in the past few months.
If Lokuhettige is included in the Sri Lankan side, he will join other fast bowlers such as Lasith Malinga, Nuwan Kulasekara and Shaminda Eranga and all-rounders Thisara Perera and Angelo Mathews, both of whom bowl pace as well.
“SLC have written to the ICC Event Technical Committee regarding this replacement,” a Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) statement said. “The replacement of a player requires the approval of the Event Technical Committee before the replacement player can be officially added to the squad.”
Initially, Welegedara’s chances of playing in the Champions Trophy looked promising as scans revealed no broken bones or fractures, but recently he has been struggling with the inflammation that has persisted in his ankle and is finding it difficult to land when bowling.
Welegedara has been the victim of numerous injuries over the past year, starting with a groin injury whilst playing against England last March before tearing a shoulder muscle before Sri Lanka’s series against Pakistan in July.
He recovered in time to travel with the team to Australia at the end of last year, but ended up tearing his hamstring during the second Test in Melbourne.
The Sri Lankan seamer has also not played any limited overs cricket since June 2010.