Match #20 in the ICC World Cup 2019 will feature a lowly Sri Lanka (W1, L1, NR2) against a confident Australia (W3, L1). A win in this fixture at The Oval on Saturday will take the Aussies to the top of points tally.
Sri Lanka can consider themselves unlucky, as two of their matches got washed out. However, they haven’t been in any good form to win in any of those. Australia have been churning out victories even though they haven’t looked in top gear.
Sri Lanka Preview
Despite all their struggles, Sri Lanka can come into semi-final contention with a win. The problem for them is their batting. Scores of 136 and 201 indicate that they haven’t really clicked. Barring captain Dimuth Karunaratne and Kusal Perera, their batsmen have looked out of place.
The gap in action has given enough time for bowler Nuwan Pradeep to recover from his injury. Senior pacer Lasith Malinga will be expected to shoulder more responsibility. Amidst all this, Sri Lanka hope that they can fly under the radar.
The Aussies looked a gear below their usual best and still are picking up wins. Opener David Warner has been enjoying with runs and his striking has also picked up. The top-order looks formidable for Australia right now.
Bowling has improved too, although Adam Zampa has been inconsistent. Pacers have impressed, led by Mitchell Starc and Pat Cummins. A win on Saturday will give Australia the cushion to stay in the top-half of points tally.
Fantasy Players to Watch
David Warner has answered critics with an excellent knock in the previous game. The left-hander has looked consistent and will continue to add fantasy points.
Pat Cummins should consider unlucky to have not picked up more than the nine wickets he did. He will look to bag a lot against the struggling Lankans.
Thisara Perera has not been at his aggressive best for Sri Lanka. At least with the bat, he has a lot to offer. Expect him to come out with all guns blazing.
Nuwan Pradeep could be fit to play for Sri Lanka.
Sri Lanka: 1 Dimuth Karunaratne (C) 2 Kusal Perera (WK) 3 Lahiru Thirimanne 4 Kusal Mendis 5 Angelo Mathews 6 Dhananjaya de Silva 7 Thisara Perera 8 Isuru Udana 9 Lasith Mainga 10 Suranga Lakmal 11 Nuwan Pradeep
Australia could look to bring in Nathan Lyon.
Australia: 1 David Warner 2 Aaron Finch (C) 3 Steve Smith 4 Usman Khawaja 5 Shaun Marsh 6 Glenn Maxwell 7 Alex Carey (WK) 8 Nathan Coulter-Nile 9 Pat Cummins 10 Mitchell Starc 11 Nathan Lyon
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