Nuwan Kulasakera will be called upon to do the bulk of Sri Lanka’s fast bowling. The medium-pacer has had experience down under, and it is his knowledge of these conditions that should allow him to hit a dangerous line and length. In a team dominated by spin bowlers, Kulasakera provides the side with an economic option who can take regular wickets.
Kulasakera made his Test debut against New Zealand in the 2005/06 season. Coming on as a first change bowler, the accurate quick picked up the wicket of Lou Vincent in a match that finished in a draw. It was a subdued performance in a match that offered very little for the bowlers.
The subsequent tour of England the following year was a relative disappointment for Kulasakera, whose indifferent form saw him dropped from the side. Although he scored his one and only career half century at Lord’s, Kulasakera failed to trouble the English batsmen throughout the series.
A concerted effort to improve saw the maturing quick work relentlessly in the nets. His hard work was has seen him re-join the Test side, although he has often found it hard to get regular game time, especially in spin friendly Sri Lanka. He did play both matches in the drawn series against New Zealand, with the seamer finishing with seven wickets.
Kulasakera’s tight bowling has served him well in the shorter formats of the game. He made his debut nine years ago, taking 2/19 in Sri Lanka’s huge win against England. His improvements in 2007 saw him selected in the World Cup squad that eventually lost the final to Australia. In fact, his improvement was so pronounced that the seamer was the number one ranked bowler in ODI’s at the start of the 2009 season.
Kulasakera will be an essential cog in the Sri Lankan system this summer. His form in 2010 helped Sri Lanka to their historic win in Australia; a loss that the hosts are still smarting over.