Kusal Perera tests positive for Covid-19, to isolate for at least ten days

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Sri Lanka batter unlikely to be ruled out of the upcoming white-ball series against South Africa at home

Sri Lanka batter Kusal Perera has tested positive for Covid-19 and will now have to isolate for at least ten days. The development should not, at this stage, rule him out of the limited-overs series against South Africa at home in the first half of September. Perera had also missed the home series against India in July with a shoulder injury, and was just preparing to make a comeback to competitive cricket when a test on Sunday showed him to be positive for the virus.

“The protocol when someone tests positive is that we keep them isolated for ten to 14 days, and then we’ll do a cardiac assessment,” Dr Daminda Attanayake, the Sri Lanka team’s chief medical officer, told ESPNcricinfo. “If he comes back okay from the cardiac assessments and other tests, that I don’t see why we should keep him away from the South Africa series.”

The Sri Lanka squad is expected to enter a biosecure bubble around August 25 in preparation for the South Africa series. As Perera will already be in isolation, he will be allowed to enter the bubble once his isolation period is concluded.

Although the virus is not expected to keep Perera out of the series, Attanayake did suggest that it was not yet clear whether his shoulder injury had healed sufficiently for him to return to international cricket.

South Africa are scheduled to play three ODIs and three T20s, all in Colombo. The first of those games is set for September 2 and the last for September 14.

Andrew Fidel Fernando is ESPNcricinfo’s Sri Lanka correspondent. @afidelf