About the Match
Yes the Sri Lankans did what they were expected to do; beating the home team comprehensively in the 2nd match at Chester le Street on 25th May, routing the home team for 99 in just 26.1 overs after making a challenging 256 for 8. The Lankans have bounced back into the 5-match ODI series with a roar and made their intentions loud and clear that they cannot be taken lightly; they have equaled England 1-1 and take them on again on 28th May at Manchester. While the weather forecast predicts light rain and the match may be played with reduced overs, the contest will surely see both teams fight it out to the best of their skills and spirit.
The home team may try to recover from the drubbing they had from the Sri Lankans and discover the methods to tackle the pace of Kulasekara and the spin of Senanayake. Except for a defensive 40 from Morgan, no one else tried to remain at the crease and accompany to him to build partnerships; instead they fell like nine-pins for a miserable display of irresponsible batting. They were able to contain the batting line up of the Lankans due to some good pace by Gurney and assisted by deceiving balls from Tredwell; the home team may continue with the same team and try to tamper with the batting order slightly to wear off the Sri Lankans’ initial pace attack. Improved fielding may prove good support to the bowlers to contain the flow of runs from the Sri Lankans. If they win the toss they must bat first as they did in the 1st ODI. They must put their heads down and try to dominate the Lankan bowling with sufficient wickets in hand. The top order batsmen are good in building partnerships when there is no pressure but they get off balance with a target gazing at them.
They did not tamper with the batting order after losing the 1st match and that gave the required confidence to the top order, comprising of well accomplished and experienced batsmen. They will retain the same squad for the upcoming match, which has a good balance of strong batting line up and pace and slow bowling combinations. Dilshan, Jayawardene and Sangakkara are known for their defiance of insisting bowling and they have come out of such situations many a times and overpowered the bowling attack; as they did after losing Thirimanne early in the 2nd ODI and losing Thirimanne and Sangakkara in the 1st match. The top order clicked well in the 2nd ODI with good contributions up to No.7 and built a challenging total while the England team collapsed under pressure. Kulasekara and Malinga have a good combination in starting the attack to demoralize any side and build pressure; they will continue with the same tactics over the English to establish a lead in the series after winning the 2nd ODI with a big margin.
The victory has boosted the morale of the visiting team and while England will try to take control of the situation, the Lankans will draw energy from their drubbing of the home team in the 2nd ODI and fight hard to get ahead in the series.
Sri Lanka, 1.90 @ Bet365