Sri Lankan top order batsman Danushka Gunathilaka has been ruled out of the upcoming Asia Cup 2018 after sustaining a back injury during training on Wednesday (September 12) evening.
The left-hander, who travelled with the national squad to the UAE, will return home to receive further treatment. He has been replaced by all-rounder Shehan Jayasuriya in the squad, as confirmed by Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) on Thursday (September 13).
It was their second injury setback for Sri Lanka ahead of their 2018 Asia Cup campaign in the UAE as Gunathilaka joined batting mainstay Dinesh Chandimal, who was also ruled out of the tournament with a broken finger, ahead of the tournament.
This is the second time when he missed the ODIs as Gunathilaka was suspended for six international matches by SLC, for an alleged breach of code of conduct regulations in July.
Injury aside, Sri Lanka is likely to be without services of their first-choice spinner Akila Dananjaya during the opening stages of the tournament as he awaits the birth of his first child.
Meanwhile, Jayasuriya, who is a middle-order batsman and an off-spinning all-rounder, has played only eight ODIs, and is yet to impress with the bat but it will be great opportunity to make a mark in the UAE.
Sri Lanka comes into the six-team event with a miserable record in ODI cricket, having won just 10 of the 39 ODIs since the beginning of 201. They will play Bangladesh in the Asia Cup opener on September 2018.