Samaraweera to work with Aussie Test hopefuls for Lanka tour

Brisbane: As part of their preparations for the upcoming Sri Lanka tour, Cricket Australia (CA) roped in former islander Thilan Samaraweera to work with some of the Test hopefuls at the National Cricket Centre here. Samaraweera, who has been hired as a consultant for just two months, has already begun to work with Adam Voges, Shaun Marsh and Jackson Bird as they prepare for the tour. "At the moment I'm involved with the National Cricket Academy here. I'm working with a few Test players who are not involved in that West Indies tri-series. They are just coming here to train". Samaraweera, who lives in Melbourne, said he was unlikely to accompany the Australians on their tour as he was also working with Australia's A team players.  To get a feel of the subcontinent conditions, the 39-year-old has been working with the Test hopefuls on two specially designed turning pitches at the academy. "I've had a hit on the spin wicket here and it's very good, very similar to what you get on the subcontinent and it was a challenging net session," Marsh said. "Samaraweera was throwing a few offies as well, and it's been really good to chat to him and get a bit of an insight into the sort of conditions we'll be facing in the next couple of months. He's been helping with advice on how to play spin, he's good to chat about that with." Australia will leave for Sri Lanka in early July, well ahead of the first Test, which begins in Pallekele on July 26.