Thirty-somethings Mahela Jayawardene, Kumar Sangakkara, Tillakaratne Dilshan and Thilan Samaraweera, who form the core of Sri Lanka’s batting, are shaping as Sri Lanka’s best chance of breaking their 10-Test, 25-year winless record.
Since being hammered in their first Test in Australia in early 1988, Sri Lanka have lost another seven matches and drawn two, most recently in Cairns in 2004.
Sri Lanka’s hopes appear to rest on their batsmen providing enough runs to upset Michael Clarke’s Australia, the world number three Test side, who are embarking on their first series since the retirement of Ricky Ponting.
However, Sri Lanka’s form does not augur well with just four victories in their last 20 Tests. Their current Test ranking is a lowly sixth.
Australia are coming off a 309-run drubbing by world number one South Africa this month, and Hobart will be the first chance for their new-look batting line-up after the record-breaking Ponting retired with 13,378 Test runs.