Sri Lanka seeks quick turnaround in First T20I

Published : 9:00 am  December 20, 2017 | No comments so far |  | 


 reads | 

MB_5By Yohan Bhasura reporting from India 

Sri Lanka will look to break an almost nine-month long winless streak when they take on India in the first of three T20Is at the Barabati Stadium in Cuttack today (20). 

Having last won a T20I in April, when they beat Bangladesh by six-wickets, Sri Lanka have lost successive series to India and Pakistan. 

Out of the 12 T20Is Sri Lanka have played this year, they have lost seven and won just five – winning series away in South Africa and Australia with a 2-1 margin, before drawing 1-1 with Bangladesh at home. 

Since then however, Sri Lanka have lost five matches in a row, and face an uphill task when they take on fifth-ranked India, who will be led by Rohit Sharma in the absence of regular Captain Virat Kohli.   
Explosive opener Kusal Janith Perera is expected to return to the Sri Lanka Team for the first time since injuring his hamstring during a group match of the ICC Champions Trophy against India in June, which sidelined him for the home tours against Zimbabwe and India, and the tour of the United Arab Emirates (UAE). 

Kusal was slated to comeback for both the tour of the UAE and the recently concluded ODI series against India, but fitness issues meant that the wait for his return continued. 

Kusal is expected to open the batting with Danushka Gunathilaka while Niroshan Dickwella’s and Upul Tharanga’s positions in the batting order will depend on the situation of Sri Lanka’s innings. 
All-rounder Chathuranga de Silva will be an added spin option for Sri Lanka along with leg-spinner Akila Dananajaya. 


Explosive opener Kusal Janith Perera is expected to return to the Sri Lanka Team for the first time since injuring his hamstring

With Captain Thisara Perera and Angelo Mathews providing fast bowling options for Sri Lanka, Dasun Shanaka is unlikely to make the final XI which will be decided shortly before the start of the game which begins at 7 p.m. Sri Lanka time. 

Meanwhile, India have decided to rest opener Shikhar Dhawan who was the man of the ODI series, and pace bowler Bhuwaneshwar Kumar. 

Captain Sharma, Mahendra Singh Dhoni, Dinesh Karthik and Manish Pandey will be the key players in the Indian Team.  

Sri Lanka: Thisara Perera (Captain), Danushka Gunathilaka, Upul Tharanga, Angelo Mathews, Niroshan Dickwella, Sadeera Samarawickrama, Asela Gunaratne, Sachith Pathirana, Chathuranga de Silva, Akila Dananjaya, Dushmantha Chameera, Nuwan Pradeep, Kusal Perera, Dasun Shanaka and Vishwa Fernando.

India: Rohit Sharma (Captain), K. L. Rahul, Shreyas Iyer, Manish Pandey, Dinesh Karthik, M. S. Dhoni, Hardik Pandya, Washington Sundar, Yuzvendra Chahal, Kuldeep Yadav, Deepak Hooda, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Siraj, Basil Thampi and Jaydev Unadkat