Sri Lanka vs England: Four ODI Preview

Cricket ball sits on pitch
Jonhenry Wilson previews the fourth ODI between Sri Lanka and England which is set to get underway on Saturday 20 October. 

Rain has played havoc with the series so far, with the first match rained out before the following two were severely shortened.

England hold an unassailable 2-0 lead in the five-match series, with two matches to go, after winning curtailed contests in Dambulla and Kandy.

Sri Lanka v England 
Saturday, 20 October
Pallekele International Stadium

To Win Match
Sri Lanka 23/10
Tie 35/1
England 7/20

Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka's batting has been enormously disappointing in their brief innings to date, but they did start quite well in the third ODI. Niroshan Dickwella and Sadeera Samarawickrama took the attack to the England quicks early on - and it seemed as though it was game on.

The best any of their batsmen could manage, though, was a trio of 30-odd scores from the openers and Dinesh Chandimal. Skipper Chandimal was unable to hold the middle-order together against Adil Rashid.

Kusal Mendis was drafted into the squad for the third ODI after Kusal Perera suffered a hamstring injury in the second. It was hoped that Mendis would be able to replicate his red-ball form in the shorter format, but instead he was dismissed for his third consecutive ODI duck at the Pallekele International Stadium.

In what was effectively a Twenty20 match, thanks to persistent rain on Wednesday (17 October), only Dhananjaya de Silva was able to keep his RPO below six. Spinner Amila Aponso proved his wicket-taking ability with the scalps of Jonny Bairstow and Joe Root but took some tap from Jason Roy, Eoin Morgan and Ben Stokes.

For England this tour is shaping up to be something of a frustrating waste of their time, unless they see the visit as practice for rain-reduced World Cup contests.

The England camp became visibly agitated during the rain delay during the third ODI, remonstrating with umpire Aleem Dar as the officials insisted the rain had to have stopped completely before an inspection could be conducted.

The tourists haven't been able to try out too many combinations due to the abbreviated nature of the matches played so far.

Roy found form up front before being undone by spin in the middle overs and England's go-to man for the chase, skipper Morgan, guided them home with help from Stokes. They have been unable to unleash their full batting potential on Sri Lanka, batting out the 50 overs just once so far.

Fast bowler Olly Stone has done well since making his debut, which will give the English management something to smile about as they narrow their search for that extra quick for the World Cup in 2019. 

Verdict: England 7/20
Sri Lanka have their backs to the wall right now, but they are no cornered tigers and the Three Lions are hungry for success.

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Written by Jonhenry Wilson for Hollywoodbets

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