Jul 11, 2013 Sports
ESPNcricinfo – Much of the cricketing world’s attention might be drawn towards the blue-riband Test series which kicked off in England yesterday, but a soon-to-be-forgotten tri-series in the Caribbean isn’t done with yet. India and Sri Lanka have played each other so often in recent years that even jokes about how often they play each other have become stale. Still, when the two sides face off for the 42nd ODI in five years today, there’s a series trophy on the line. Also, firing up the two teams will be the chance for two young captains to get their hands on some silverware.
If it wasn’t enough that India’s one-day side was shorn of many of its most experienced players in recent months, they also lost the services of MS Dhoni midway through the tournament. That meant that two years on from their World Cup triumph, India’s ODI side had only two players that featured in that famous Mumbai final. Fast on the heels of that Dhoni injury, India were humiliated by Sri Lanka by 161 runs, and were staring at an early exit.
Instead, stand-in captain Virat Kohli added to his ever-expanding tally of ODI centuries to resuscitate the campaign, before Bhuvneshwar Kumar added to his burgeoning reputation as a new-ball expert by ripping through Sri Lanka’s batting. The two victories meant India ended up top of the table, and will go into the final with more of the swagger that carried them to the Champions Trophy title.
Sri Lanka have more experience in their line-up, particularly in the batting, but have lost some high-profile crunch ODIs to India in recent years. Their bowling attack isn’t as seasoned though, and plenty will depend on how Lasith Malinga and Rangana Herath fare.
Sri Lanka will play their fourth day of cricket in five when they play the final, and thankfully the weather forecast is better than it has been over the past week. There is still a chance of some light showers but it is likely that Thursday will prove the last of India-Sri Lanka cricket for the year.
In the spotlight
On Thursday, Mahela Jayawardene will become only the third cricketer to play 400 ODIs, behind legends Sachin Tendulkar and Sanath Jayasuriya. He has a penchant for turning up on the big occasion, as India well know, and will be desperate to mark the landmark game with a performance that will lift Sri Lanka to only their third ODI series win in previous 12 campaigns.
After a long and not always convincing streak in the middle order, Rohit Sharma has reinvented himself as an ODI opener. Usually a flamboyant, attacking player, he has had to shelve his more expansive strokes in the challenging conditions of the Caribbean. His strike-rate is a pedestrian 60.45 this series, but he has already played three important innings in four matches.
Fast bowler Suranga Lakmal started the long journey from Sri Lanka to the Caribbean Tuesday after Nuwan Kulasekara was ruled out of the tournament with a hand injury, but whether that will only end up in boosting only his frequent flier miles or the Sri Lankan pace attack as well is still to be seen. While he has to deal with the jet lag, he at least has the experience of playing in the Caribbean as recently as a couple of weeks ago, when he turned out for Sri Lanka A, taking eight wickets in three matches.
Unless MS Dhoni is deemed fit for the final, India aren’t likely to tinker with their combination much.
Jun 14, 2021Kaieteur News – By Calvin Chapman The National Track & Field Center (NTFC) at Leonora will come alive this weekend with some much missed athletics action when the Athletics Association of...
Jun 14, 2021
Jun 13, 2021
Jun 13, 2021
Jun 13, 2021
Jun 13, 2021
Kaieteur News– Have you read the WPA’s statement accepting the Guyana Government’s request from Walter Rodney’s... more
Kaieteur News- The President’s recent handling of complaints by members of the public was not demonstrative of the sort... more
Freedom of speech is our core value at Kaieteur News. If the letter/e-mail you sent was not published, and you believe that its contents were not libellous, let us know, please contact us by phone or email.
Feel free to send us your comments and/or criticisms.
Contact: 624-6456; 225-8452; 225-8458; 225-8463; 225-8465; 225-8473 or 225-8491.
Or by Email: [email protected] / [email protected]