Lasith Embuldeniya
Lasith Embuldeniya (AFP Photo)

Sri Lanka spinner Lasith Embuldeniya ended up dislocating his left thumb while attempting a return catch on the opening day of the second Test against South Africa in Port Elizabeth on Thursday.

The extent of the injury can be gauged from the fact that reports claim he was to undergo a surgery on Thursday itself.

Embuldeniya went for a return catch from South Africa’s Kagiso Rabada but was a bit early to close his hands that saw the ball jamming his thumb against the back of his hand. Writhing in pain, the 22-year-old sprinted back while holding a bloodied thumb even before the team physio could have a look at him.

Embuldeniya, who made an impressive debut in the first Test with a five-wicket haul in South Africa’s second innings, has reportedly been ruled out for at least six weeks. This means his tour of South Africa has come to an early end.

The left-arm spinner is the fourth Lankan bowler to leave the ongoing tour of South Africa after an injury mishap. Before Embuldeniya, the tourists had to let go of Dushmantha Chameera, Lahiru Kumara and Nuwan Pradeep for various injuries.

His injury must have dented Sri Lanka’s chances in the second Test and thus the two-match series which they currently lead after a nail-biting one-wicket win in Durban last week.

It seems unlikely Embuldeniya will be able to bowl again during the second Test.