Mahela Jayawardene
Mahela Jayawardene of Sri Lanka batting during the 1st Test Match between England and Sri Lanka at LordsGetty

Sri Lanka batsman Mahela Jayawardene has announced he is to retire from Test cricket follwing his nation's series against South Africa and Pakistan.

Jayawardene started his illustrious career in 1997 and has made 11,493 Test runs, at an average of 50.18.

His highest score came in Colombo in July 2006, when he made 374 against South Africa, a stand that remains the fourth best innings in Test history.

The 37-year-old, who is preparing for his penultimate Test in South Africa, will play his last Test matches against Pakistan in August.

Jayawardene has already retired from the Twenty20 format, deciding to call it a day after Sri Lanka's recent World Twenty20 victory. He will continue to play in one-day internationals.

His decision to remain in the frame for 50-over matches means he will be available for next year's World Cup in Australia and New Zealand.

A Sri Lankan board statement read: "Sri Lanka Cricket wishes to announce that Mr Mahela Jayawardene has tendered his resignation from Test cricket.

"Addressing a letter to the chief executive officer of SLC Mr Ashley De Silva, Mahela Jayawardene has stated that he would like to retire from Test cricket after the forthcoming Test series against South Africa and Pakistan."

Former captain Jayawardene said: "It was not an easy decision to make, given that it has been a great privilege and honour representing my country during the past 18 years.

"But I believe this is the right time."