Australia take on the Sri Lankans in their next match of the 2019 Cricket World Cup at the Kennington Oval in London.
The Lankans had faced defeat at the hands of the Aussies in the warm-up matches and looking at their form, a similar fate awaits them in this clash. The Men in Yellow have garnered three wins and are placed second in the table. In the World Cup, the Lankans have beaten the Aussies only once back in 1996, losing seven games.
The track at the venue has favored the team batting first, in the tournament. Three out of the four matches went against the chasing team. The other day, even New Zealand strained to chase down 245 and lost eight wickets. Hence, teams won’t want to take the risk of batting second on the strip. The deck is also speculated to slow down a wee bit as the match progresses.
The Aussies may not make any changes to their playing eleven. Marcus Stoinis has a side strain and there’s a doubt on his return. It means Shaun Marsh is likely to be persisted with. Kane Richardson may have to make way for Adam Zampa bearing in mind the nature of the pitch. Aaron Finch and David Warner firing together is definitely an ominous sign for the opposition.
Steve Smith will want to make amends after a rare failure versus Pakistan. It’ll also be interesting to see where Khawaja and Marsh bat. Glenn Maxwell has looked threatening but is yet to get a big score. Nathan Coulter-Nile also seemed to find his touch. The Aussies will again depend on Mitchell Starc and the ever-so-reliable Pat Cummins to get the early breakthroughs.
The Lankans may bring fast bowler Nuwan Pradeep in the eleven. Prior to the game versus Bangladesh, he developed a cut and dislocation on his finger from the bowling arm and was ruled out of the game. But before the next match, he has returned to the nets and also bowled for around 25 minutes. A call on his availability for the game will be taken on Friday.
Lasith Malinga is also back after attending his mother-in-law’s funeral. In the bowling department, Suranga Lakmal will wish to make amends after going wicketless in the first two games. The likes of Kusal Mendis, Dhananjaya de Silva, and Angelo Mathews need to find their rhythm as well. Kusal Perera and Karunaratne’s role will be critical if the Lankans are to put up a good score.
Predicted Playing XI
Australia – Aaron Finch (C), David Warner, Steve Smith, Glenn Maxwell, Shaun Marsh, Usman Khawaja, Alex Carey (wk), Nathan Coulter-Nile, Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc, Adam Zampa
Sri Lanka – Dimuth Karunaratne (C), Kusal Perera (wk), Lahiru Thirimanne, Kusal Mendis, Angelo Mathews, Dhananjaya de Silva, Thisara Perera, Nuwan Pradeep, Isuru Udana, Suranga Lakmal, Lasith Malinga
Dream XI Tips
Wicketkeeper – Kusal Perera
Batsmen – David Warner (C), Aaron Finch, Usman Khawaja, Dimuth Karunaratne
All-Rounders – Glen Maxwell, Dhananjaya de Silva
Bowlers – Mitchell Starc (VC), Pat Cummins, Lasith Malinga, Nuwan Pradeep