Island Cricket

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Sri Lanka v Zimbabwe Preview

Sri Lanka enters its summer of minnow trumping with 5 ODIs against the Zimbabweans.

We followed the progress of the Lankans in the warm up game leading up to the series here.

If ever there was a one sided contest this would beat the crap out of that series and then stamp on its throat until its jugular split open and left it tasting its own blood.

I will chastise Sri Lanka if we do not win this series with thumping performances in every game.

Batting


Sri Lanka- Strong

The absence of the great Sanath will not be missed as Sri Lanka are in the able hands of Mahela and Sangakkara to lead the charges.

The one good thing about this series is that its given the selectors a chance to blood some of the youngster who were making a name for themselves in the A team to show their wares in the international game.

Comeback kid Upul Tharanga will be looking to seal his spot in the team with some good performances.

Partnering him will be young Mahela Udawatte.

A fine stroke maker who tends to loose the plot when the ball moves around a bit. Udawatte will be fighting for the openers slot with Upul when Sanath does return so this will be a mini battle that will keep me interested.

The middle order is where the Sri Lankans are at their strongest. Sangakkara and Mahela have been under immense pressure in the media back home. This will give them a chance to put those things aside and rattle up the runs. It will be interesting to see if these two have been mentally affected by any of these issues.

Thilina Kandamby makes a welcome return to the team. Currently captaining the SL A team, Kandamby has been in devastating form with the bat for the A team as well as his club.

A consistent performance through out the series will do his claims for a test spot as well as securing a permanent spot in the ODI team no end of good. Specially now that Chamara Silva and Dilshan cant hit the ball off the square if their life depended on it.

Zimbabwe- Like a knife through butter.

The burden fell on Chikinbura, Matsikenyeri and Masakadza when things fell apart in Zimbabwe.

Young and inexperienced it will be a very tough task for these young players to make any sort of impact against a formidable Sri Lankan attack.

With talisman Taibu in doubt for most of the series, the Zimbabwe batsmen are up against an almighty battle.

Bowling

Sri Lanka- Its all about Splendid.

Yes, Ajantha Mendis will be looking to break all sorts of records when he gets the ball in his hands, or should we say fingers.

I had to contain my self from not making this another post entirely about him, but having had a look in at the warm up game where he picked up 8 wickets, with his eyes closed, Splendid will be the main threat to the Zimbabweans.

How many wickets will he get. I’m going with 25+,

Provided they get past- Dammika Prasad and Thilan Thushara. Thushara has been quite the revelation with bat and ball. With Chaminda Vass not playing this gives these young quicks a rare opportunity to give the selectors a headache.

Oh and then there some guy called Murali who some say is quite useful.

Zimbabwe-unknown quantity

Elton Chigumbura medium pace will be an important part of how well the Zimbabweans tame the Sri Lankan firepower.

The new ball should fall to Mupariwa, who has been impressive in his short ODI career to date. If he can nip out a few Sri Lankans early then things might get a little interesting in Harare.

One to Watch

Angelo Matthews

21, bursting with talent and raring to go in the national team.

Its funny how the Asian teams blood their youngsters so early in their careers. But Matthews has been in the big leagues since 16 when he played for the U19 team.

Following a magnificent time in SA. Matthews will look to seal his spot in the middle order with some good performances. As an added advantage he can bowl some medium pacers as well.

Elton Chigumbura

-In a side with next to no hope of winning, Elton stands out as a promising medium pacer who can deliver the goods against the big teams.

Zimbabwe will depend on him quite a bit if they are to avoid a drubbing.

Prediction

5-0.

To Sri Lanka.(In case anyone is confused)

by DamithS


3 Comments:

Anonymous said...

We are waiting for the blogger's post-mortem, where ??? Review, 2 out of 10, nor were we strong or they butter what ever. Leave the brain matters too to the shrinks dude and common, give us more cricket & the near escapes we had in ZIM. ODI rankings for us remain the same and rightly so, we are just better than ZIM currently, actually.

Damith S. said...

Annon> It was highly anti climatic wasn't it.

But it was some fine cricket.

Post mortem coming soon old chap. Hold on to your seats.

Anonymous said...

Post-Mortem ~ Batting was a shame

It was one of the most shameful batting performances by Sri Lanka team in recent times. In the five ODIs, Sri Lanka batsmen painted a poor picture and had an overall batting average of only 22.33 per batsman with an overall run rate of 3.79 against one of the weakest bowling attacks in the world. Leading Sri Lanka's pathetic batting show was none other than captain Mahela Jayawardene who averaged only 4.75 runs in his four innings of 15, 4, 0 and 0.

More ... http://www.dailynews.lk/2008/12/04/spo03.asp

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