About the Match
Despite heroic efforts from Sri Lankan bowlers in their last game, they lost the match by just one wicket in what was a low scoring thriller. Sri Lanka would be looking to make amends to their batting performance in an extremely crucial game against the hosts. The match would be played on 13th June 2013 at The Oval at 12:00pm GMT. The earlier game of this group resulted in being abandoned which has made the situation even trickier in this group. The Kiwis are sitting with 3 points and Sri Lanka needs to win this game to have a chance for a semifinal spot.
The hosts have a pretty good side on paper. With stability at the top of the order and hard hitters in the lower middle order, their batting balance seems flawless for a 50 over game; that is only true if they get a decent start at the top of the order and have scored at a decent pace without losing many wickets. Their bowling lineup is their main weapon with Anderson and Bresnan ably supported by Broad and Tredwell in the absence of Swann. Bopara has balanced the side with his all-round capabilities and this English squad is difficult to beat, especially in home conditions.
Not unlike England, the Sri Lankan side has got flamboyant opening pair. With attractive stroke-play of Kushal Perera and Tillakaratne Dilshan, they can take the game away in the opening overs itself. With Jayawardene and Sangakkara to follow, their batting looks well settled. Their major worries stand with their bowling which was torn apart by India in the opening practice match. Malinga would be expected to perform yet again and if he fires along with their batting, this team captained by Angello Mathews would be a very tough contender.
In the ICC Champions Trophy so far, we have seen low scoring games being defended. Considering the pitch at the Oval, this is very unlikely to happen again. With the array of different sort of batsmen and ability to hit the ball at will, the Sri Lankan opening pair looks well settled. It would be more of a contest between England’s bowling and Sri Lanka’s batting and I suspect the visitors would emerge on top to stay alive in the tournament.
Sri Lanka, 2.30 @ Bet365
The opening combination for both the sides has done reasonably well in recent past. Ian Bell has look to be in sublime touch while Captain Cook has supported him well too. They’ve, however, struggled to score at quick pace and on the other hand the Sri Lankan openers love to play their shots. With conditions suitable for batting, Sri Lanka is more likely to outscore England in first 15 overs.
Team to Make Highest 1st 15 Over Score:
Sri Lanka, 2.00 @ Bet365