England has included former South Africa Test all-rounder Jacques Kallis as a batting consultant for its two-Test tour of Sri Lanka that starts on January 14, officials confirmed on Monday.
Kallis, regarded as one of the leading all-rounders to play the game, is a surprise pick for a role that has been filled by Jonathan Trott and Marcus Trescothick in the last 12 months.
The 45-year-old scored 13,206 test runs at an average of 55.37 and had an excellent reputation for his proficiency in sub-continent conditions. He performed slightly above that in Asia with eight centuries at an average of 55.62.
At this stage he has not been confirmed for subsequent tour of India in February.
Kallis worked as a batting consultant for South Africa in its 3-1 test series loss to England last year, but was not retained.
Assistant coach Graham Thorpe has been rested for the Sri Lanka tour, with Paul Collingwood filling the role, while Jon Lewis (fast-bowling coach), Jeetan Patel (spin consultant) and James Foster (wicketkeeping consultant) are also part of head coach Chris Silverwood’s team.