Tri-Series: Sri Lanka vs India Preview

Batsman faces bowler in front of packed cordon

We take a look at the tri-series encounter between Sri Lanka and India set to take place in Colombo on Monday. 

The competition no longer has any unbeaten teams, as the seven-match affair welcomes its fourth fixture, which will see a Sri Lankan outfit smarting from defeat to Bangladesh eager to bounce back.

India were hardly tested against Bangladesh, but have plenty of correction to implement, quickly, after losing to the Sri Lankans in the tournament opener last week.

Sri Lanka v India | Monday, 12 March | R Premadasa Stadium, Colombo | 15:30

To Win Match
Sri Lanka 14/10
Tie  35/1
India 57/100

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Sri Lanka
No score seems large enough at the R Premadasa Stadium at the moment, as Sri Lanka wonder how they were unable to successfully defend 214 against Bangladesh. For one, Akila Dananjaya doesn't boast the mystery factor he once did and the attack is clearly missing the consistency of Suranga Lakmal. The spinner might need replacing, while the seamer certainly deserves a recall.

Kusal Mendis was the mainstay of the batting order again, but more is needed from the rest. Dinesh Chandimal, like Indian skipper Rohit Sharma, seems overly burdened by the leadership - and needs to find a balance that won't hinder his primary role with the bat. Chandimal, too, has to keep wicket - a lot of responsibility, indeed.

The Sri Lankans are going to have to find a way to successfully combat Shikhar Dhawan. The hard-hitting opener is enjoying a fine stretch of form - and steering a rather inexperienced outfit through some tough challenges. If the hosts can remove Dhawan early and inexpensively, it might just get the better of India overall.

They'll do well to target the young seam attack, too. Without the rested Jasprit Bumrah and Bhuvneshwar Kumar, India's opening bowling and overs at the so-called death have lacked enough tight economy and penetration. Upul Tharanga, in particular, with his wealth of experience, should take it upon himself to target this.


India will recollect their inadequacies against Monday's opposition in the series opener - and know full well that a stronger performance with the ball is in high demand. While the seamers must fire, yes, Yuzvendra Chahal needs to do the same. He isn't quite half the bowler he is when fellow wrist spinner Kuldeep Yadav is around, but needs to do well in isolation - not tandem - as well.

The decision to push Rishabh Pant up the order against Bangladesh didn't necessarily work, but should be considered again. This is the ideal chance for Pant to convert his potential into substance, while the likes of Virat Kohli and Mahendra Singh Dhoni are not around. India are looking to their next generation - and Pant is certainly key to it.

Washington Sundar's ongoing role as a new-ball bowler will be vital. Sri Lanka were bombarded by several overs of seam against Bangladesh - and the change of pace should hinder them for even a brief period. Sundar's variations on a pitch that is proving increasingly predictable should yield good results.

The toss-winning captain has opted to bowl each and every time in the series so far - and Sharma's choice shouldn't be any different, if triumphant at the flip of the coin. India are among the greatest chasing sides - and Monday's venue ideal for big pursuits. He will, of course, need to lead by example with the willow.

Verdict: India 57/100
With Sri Lanka effectively shell-shocked by Bangladesh 48 hours earlier, Sharma and company will avenge their defeat in the first match - and all but blow the competition wide open ahead of Saturday's final.

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Written by Jonhenry Wilson for Hollywoodbets

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