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POSTED AT 03:04 PM 28-02-2019

Hampshire sign Dimuth Karunaratne as overseas player

Sri Lanka’s stand-in captain Dimuth Karunaratne has signed for Hampshire as an overseas player for the first half of the 2019 county season.

The 30-year-old batsman recently helped his nation secure a historic 2-0 victory against South Africa, becoming the first Asia-based team – and the third team overall – to win an away Test series against the Proteas, the Wisden reported.

Karunaratne will be available for matches in the Specsavers County Championship and Royal London One-Day Cup.

Since making his debut in July 2011, the left-hander has scored more than 4,000 runs in 60 Tests, becoming a regular at the top of the order. He has also featured in 17 ODIs.

“He’s a high-class player and in recent months we’ve seen his quality, not only as an opening batsman at the top of the order, but also as a leader,” said Giles White, Hampshire’s director of cricket.

A delighted Karunaratne added: “It has always been my dream to play in the County Championship … I am looking forward to building on the success from 2018 by playing an important role in Hampshire’s future.”

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