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Kumar Sangakkara bats for Kusal Perera's inclusion for England tour

Kumar Sangakkara bats for Kusal Perera's inclusion for England tour
Kushal Perera in a press conference after the charges were cleared by the ICC.
©REUTERS / Action Images

Former Sri Lankan captain Kumar Sangakkara is hoping that Kusal Perera will be given a chance to feature on the tour of England after doping charges against him were lifted.

In December 2015, Perera was provisionally suspended after results from a Qatar laboratory revealed he had tested positive for a banned substance.

However, earlier this week, the International Cricket Committee (ICC) lifted the sanction on Perera and allowed him to resume his career after an expert review failed to conclusively determine any evidence of doping.

The ICC also lauded Perera for his demeanour during the ordeal and stated that they have asked for an urgent explanation from the laboratory as well as the World Anti-Doping Agency.

Since making his international debut in 2013, Perera has played 51 One-Day Internationals and has scored 1,259 runs with two centuries and seven fifties.

Perera was handed his Test debut in 2015 and has scored 169 runs so far from five innings while he has 596 runs from 22 Twenty20 Internationals.

Sangakkara is unable to figure out what transpired during the entire ordeal with Perera, whom he termed as one of the most exciting talents in Sri Lanka.

"Before this tour he (Kusal Perera) would have been in the T20 World Cup, opening up with (Tillakaratne) Dilshan, which would have been a huge advantage," Sangakkara said.

"I’m extremely confused as to what’s happened.

"The labs in Qatar came back with an adverse finding in one of his urine samples and they named him, with the steroid that was found.

"Suddenly, over the last two days, they’ve withdrawn that and said ‘we might have made a mistake’.

"The poor boy has been out for quite a long time.

"He’s very young, 25, one of the most exciting talents we have."

Backing the inclusion of Perera in the squad to tour England, Sangakkara added that the best way to help the left-hander overcome the ordeal will be to have him play international cricket as early as possible.

"I hope they do (pick him), because I think when you’ve gone through something like that, the best thing you can do is to be allowed to play cricket again.

"But the sad fact is that, I think, when you are provisionally banned, you can’t even train or use the facilities that international teams use.

"Unfortunately, Sri Lanka have lost a remarkable player for quite a long time now and hopefully he’ll have a very successful career from here on in."

Sangakkara is playing for Surrey in the 2016 County Championship and is currently second to Jony Bairstow at the top of the run-scoring charts this season with 531 runs from eight innings at an average of 66.37 including a century and four fifties.

© Cricket World 2016