Colombo - Opening batsman Upul Tharanga is in line for his first Test appearance in seven years after being named in the Sri Lanka squad for the two-match series against Proteas, starting at Galle on July 16.
Left-hander Tharanga's last Test was against England in 2007 but he has been out of favour in the five-day game since, although he has been picked for one-day internationals.
He replaces Dimuth Karunaratne in the 15-man squad, with fast bowlers Nuwan Pradeep and Nuwan Kulasekara and specialist wicketkeeper Prasanna Jayawardene also left out.
Pradeep and Jayawardene are injured while Kulasekara has been dropped in favour of spinner Ajantha Mendis, who played his last test against Bangladesh in February.
Pradeep led the attack in the recent series victory over England, while Jayawardene missed the second test due to an injured thumb and was replaced by Dinesh Chandimal, who will keep his place against South Africa.
Fast bowler Suranga Lakmal also returns after missing the England series with a hamstring injury.
Squad: Angelo Mathews (captain), Lahiru Thirimanne, Upul Tharanga, Kaushal Silva, Kumar Sangakkara, Mahela Jayawardene, Dinesh Chandimal, Kithuruwan Vithanage, Rangana Herath, Dilruwan Perera, Ajantha Mendis, Suranga Lakmal, Shaminda Eranga, Dammika Prasad, Chanaka Welagedera.