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|Faf du Plessis||21||23||2||1||91.30|
|Rassie van der Dussen||34||30||1||1||113.33|
|Quinton de Kock||13||17||2||0||76.47|
|Dhananjaya de Silva||4.0||0||28||1||7.00|
|Dhananjaya de Silva||14||19||0||0||73.68|
South Africa responded brilliantly to the embarrassing loss in the longest version of the game as they annihilated Sri Lanka 5-0 in the ODI leg of the tour. With the Indian Premier League set to begin in less than a week's time, the attention shifts to the shorter version of the game across the globe. South Africa, in the meantime, will lock horns with Sri Lanka in the T20Is, the final leg of the tour, with the first of three matches set to be played at the Newlands, Cape Town. The first match of the series will be played on 19th March. While we expect South Africa to test their limited-overs lineup with World Cup set to be played immediately after the IPL, the Sri Lankans will take this series as an opportunity to find the balance and combination and also to redeem their lost pride.
Although South Africa are likely to field their full-strength team in the T20I series, it is expected for them to make a few changes. Aiden Markram, who was brilliant in the final ODI at Cape Town, has been left out of the squad and Reeza Hendricks will return to the top.
As was witnessed in the ODI series, the Proteas have a settled batting lineup which even the best teams in the business would be envy of. Faf du Plessis, Rassie van der Dussen, and JP Duminy will shoulder a load of their middle order with David Miller likely to play the role of a floater.
Dale Steyn is instrumental to Proteas' plans for the World Cup and is, therefore, rested for the T20I series. Kagiso Rabada and Anrich Nortje will head their pace bowling attack with excellent assistance in the form of Lungi Ngidi. Tabraiz Shamsi has been dropped from the T20I and Imran Tahir will handle the spinning duties.
Quinton de Kock, Reeza Hendricks, Faf du Plessis, RVD Dussen, David Miller, Jean-Paul Duminy, Andile Phehlukwayo, Kagiso Rabada, DW Steyn, Lutho Sipamla, Imran Tahir.
In the ODI series, Sri Lankans clearly had plenty of problems where scoring at the top, during the earlier part of the innings, had a lasting impact. We expect a change at the top for them with Sadeera Samarawickrama likely to open with Niroshan Dickwella. Dickwella too didn't have a series to remember and he will look to change things a little in the format suited to his style of batting.
Kusal Perera is still to recover from the injury he sustained earlier during the ODI series leaving their middle-order a little fragile. Barring Kusal Mendis and Dhananjaya de Silva, their middle order is highly inexperienced which could play a huge role in the fate of the match. Isuru Udana impressed with his all-around skills in the few outings he had earlier and along with Thisara Perera, he will add depth to their batting.
It was a collective failure from Sri Lanka in the ODI series where both their batsmen and bowlers failed to deliver. With the change in format, we are likely to see considerably less disparity between the two sides. Although the Islanders are a little inexperienced in the batting department, their bowling looks decent, at least on paper, with Lasith Malinga, Akila Dhananjaya, and Suranga Lakmal available.
Niroshan Dickwella, Avishka Fernando, Kusal Mendis , Dhananjaya de Silva, Angelo Perera, Thisara Perera, Kamindu Mendis, Isuru Udana, Akila Dananjaya, Lasith Malinga, JDF Vandersay.
Considering the head to head record between the two sides in the shortest version of the game, it is hard to pick between the sides. Out of the ten matches played between the two teams, Sri Lanka have won five and lost five. However, considering the recent form, the team on paper, and the fact that South Africa are playing at their home ground, it is highly unlikely for Sri Lanka to draw a win here. We will be surprised if they're even able to put up a fight, let alone winning. South Africa go in as firm favorites to emerge on top in the first match of the series.
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