Prasanna Jayawardene looked set for a long career after touring England as a
19-year-old in 1998, but had been marginalised since the rocket-fuelled
arrival of Kumar Sangakkara in 2000. Waiting on the sidelines, in fact, had
already been a feature of Jayawardene's career. He made his Test debut against Pakistan at Kandy in June 2000, but was confined to
the dressing-room throughout, as Sri Lanka batted over the first three days before rain washed out play on the last two. The resurgence of Romesh Kaluwitharana threatened to push Jayawardene further down the pecking order, but his batting has
steadily improved in the intervening years, and with the Sri Lankan selectors voicing their concerns about overburdening Sangakkara, Jayawardene was recalled to the Test squad for the tour of Zimbabwe in April 2004. However, it wasn't until the tour of New Zealand in 2006-07 when he established himself in the Test side, allowing Sangakkara to play as a specialist batsman. Jayawardene started making better contributions with the bat, scoring his maiden century, against Bangladesh. Though Sangakkara remains the first choice keeper in limited overs cricket, Jayawardene was given a chance to reclaim his spot when named in the Champions Trophy probables.