About the Match
Pakistan won the first ODI against Sri Lanka by 6 wickets and have taken a 1-0 lead in the one-day series; they will go up against each other on 15th July at Pallekele for the 2nd ODI, wherein the hosts will try to draw level with a win here. Pakistan bowlers restricted the hard-hitting Lankans to 255 runs, which the visitors easily achieved without breaking a sweat; the players are in good form to repeat the excellence with both bat and ball on Wednesday. Sri Lanka, who lost the test series earlier, will need to come out all guns blazing if they want to recover from the loss and go back to their winning ways.
Put to bat first, the top order failed to build strong partnerships although Dilshan and Mathews contributed with 38 runs each and Perera posted a 44-run opening stand with Dilshan. Chandimal fought hard with a well-made 65 off 68 balls to take the total to 255 with some help from the lower order. The bowlers found success with Mathews, Lakmal, Perera and Dilshan taking a wicket each but they couldn’t contain the run-flow against a spirited Pakistani side; Malinga and Prasanna gave away too many runs and failed to provide the required breakthroughs.
The opening batsmen must try to build the innings while middle order players must look to keep the scoreboard ticking; the bowlers are disciplined but must take wickets at regular intervals to keep Pakistan on its toes.
They have good talent and experience to come back stronger in the next match, provided they can tackle the Pakistan bowlers, who are in good form at the moment.
Mohammad Hafeez made a stunning re-entry to the squad by displaying an all-round performance in the first match; his 4-41 helped contain the Lankans to 255 and his sturdy century during the chase took the team safely to victory. He is definitely a great asset with all-rounder skills and looks good to continue with his match-winning skills in the upcoming game.
Rahat Ali, Irfan Ali and Yasir Shah took wickets at regular intervals to make a dent on the Lankan batting line-up while Mohammad Irfan's pace stifled the opponent. The bowling unit has consistently delivered with quick wickets and they look determined to help the team continue winning matches. With players like the in-form Shoaib Malik, Ahmed Shehzad, Hafeez and Azhar Ali, they are a tough side to reckon with and will come out all guns blazing again.
They have the confidence and talent to overcome challenges and dominate yet again; if the bowlers can repeat their tactics, then nothing can stop them from winning the upcoming match.
While Sri Lanka has been off-colour in recent outings, they definitely have the fire-power to avenge their previous defeat; however, with Pakistan putting up a tremendous show in all departments of the game, they look better placed to continue with their winning spree and emerge victorious on Wednesday