India v Sri Lanka: Third T20 Preview

Batsman faces bowler in front of packed cordon

Sri Lanka wrap their tour of India up with one final T20 International to be played on Christmas Eve at the Wankhede. 

A dominant year for India in limited-overs cricket will conclude on Sunday, when the third and final T20I gets underway. They've consolidated and experimented throughout - and will likely continue to do so in Mumbai.

Sri Lanka, now, just want to get 2017 over and done with. Their ODI and T20I form has been disastrous of late - and recovering from Friday's heavy drubbing will be a difficult task.

India v Sri Lanka | Sunday, 24 December | Wankhede Stadium, Mumbai | 15:30

To Win Match
India 1/4 | Tie 35/1 | Sri Lanka 3/1

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India
Rohit Sharma was absolutely sublime in Indore, striking the joint-fastest century in the history of T20I cricket. No Sri Lankan bowler was spared - and he's not going to look to relent 48 hours later.

While Mahendra Singh Dhoni was touted to bat as high as four in the order, he ended up arriving at the crease at three - and again wielded a quickfire cameo. Doubters have to stop questioning his value.

It'll be well worth India shuffling their order in Mumbai, affording the likes of Shreyas Iyer, Manish Pandey and Dinesh Karthik more overs to chase quick, big runs. With the series result wrapped up, there is no real risk of this backfiring.

The rest of the squad can come into play, too. Deepak Hooda, Mohammed Siraj and Basil Thampi will have every right to feel hard done by if they don't get a game. Thampi, in particular, can add a renewed energy to a seam attack that was lacking in Indore.

Sri Lanka
Exactly how the tourists are going to bounce back from Sharma's blitz is anyone's educated guess. Swatted to all corners of the Holkar Cricket Stadium, the Wankhede Stadium will at least offer them bigger boundaries.

They'll more than likely be without Angelo Mathews, though. The most economical bowler amid that carnage pulled up lame with injury two deliveries into his third over - and is a major doubt for the final match.

They can take some heart from their effort with the bat. Upul Tharanga, Kusal Perera and company refused to go down without some fight in Indore - and one hopes they offer a challenge in Mumbai, too.

Sri Lanka have never played a T20I at the Wankhede Stadium, but will be mindful that India have never won one here in five attempts. Four of those defeats came after batting first, so the visitors will do well to win the toss and chase well.

Verdict: India 1/4
As good as Perera, Tharanga and others proved with the bat, two days is just not enough for the Sri Lankan bowlers to rectify their plans and outdo India's power-packed batting order.

Written by Jonhenry Wilson for Hollywoodbets

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