Dambulla Viiking will face Kandy Tuskers in the evening clash of the 2020 Lanka Premier League on Thursday. Viiking are currently third in the points table, with 2 wins out of three. A big win would help them go on top of the points table if Jaffna Stallions lose their afternoon match in the LPL on Thursday.
Viiking are riding high on English cricketer Samit Patel who has been doing a great job as an all-rounder. Viiking captain Dasun Shanaka has been leading from the front but would need support from other players as well.
Kandy Tuskers are currently fourth in the points table, with just one win out of 4 games. Another loss would make it slightly tougher for Tuskers to qualify for knockouts.
Tuskers, however, have been slightly unlucky, as they lost the clash against Colombo Kings via Super Over, while they lost the match against Viiking by 4 runs via Duckworth Lewis method. However, they were beaten comprehensively by Jaffna Stallions by 54 runs. Their lone win came against Galle Gladiators by 25 runs. They would eye revenge against Viiking after their 4-run loss against them in the first clash.
Match Toss Time: 19:30 Local (19:30 IST)
Match Start Time: 20:00 Local (20:00 IST)
Match Venue: Mahinda Rajapaksa International Stadium, Hambantota
It is going to be hot, but a little respite from the sun as it would be an evening clash. The good news is that rain will keep away, so a full game is guaranteed.
As it is an evening clash, the dew factor would come into play. Hence, chasing would be easier under the lights. However, the trend has suggested that the team batting first has won 6 games out of 8. So, putting up a big score, and then defending it under the lights could be preferred. A score of 180-plus could be seen in the clash.
Viiking needs big scores from top-order cricketers as the middle-order batsmen have rescued them so far. Samit and Shanaka have been the heroes for Viiking so far. But if they have an off day, Viiking could see themselves into trouble. They have been served better in the bowling department, with the likes of Malinda Pushpakumara and Anwar Ali making useful contributions. They need the team to fire in unison to beat a competitive Tuskers.
Results have not gone Kandy Tuskers' way but they have a good mix of players, with valuable contributions from most players. Brendan Taylor got into the action straight away, scoring 51 not out and 46 in the two matches he has played so far. Kusal Mendis too has played his part, hitting 3 scores of 30 in 4 innings. Kusal Perera and Asela Gunaratne have also impressed so far. Tuskers look like a better team, but they have lacked the finishing touches to seal a game.
Probable Playing Xl
Dambulla Viiking (DVK): Niroshan Dickwella (wk), Paul Stirling, Upul Tharanga, Dasun Shanaka (captain), Samit Patel, Angelo Perera, Pulina Tharanga, Malinda Pushpakumara, Sachindu Colombage, Kasun Rajitha, Anwar Ali
Kandy Tuskers (KTK): MDKJ Perera (Captain, keeper), BKG Mendis, Rahmanullah Gurbaz, N Pradeep, S Prasanna, DAS Gunaratne, Naveen-ul-Haq, PHKD Mendis, MDK Perera, BRM Taylor, MM Patel
DVK vs KTK Fantasy Team
Brendan Taylor (KTK), Niroshan Dickwella (DVK), Kusal Mendis (KTK), Rahmanullah Gurbaz (KTK), Kusal Perera (KTK), Asela Gunaratne (KTK), Samit Patel (DVK), Dasun Shanaka (DVK), Malinda Pushpakumara (DVK), Naveen-ul-Haq (KTK), Anwar Ali (DVK)
Captain picks: Samit Patel (DVK), Dasun Shanaka (DVK)
Vice-captain picks: Brendan Taylor (KTK), DAS Gunaratne (KTK)
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