With just one week left for the grand finale of the Lanka Premier League 2020, we are now at the business end of the tournament and the teams are giving it everything to register their spot in the play-offs. The 16th match of the LPL 2020 is set to take place between bottom dwellers Kandy Tuskers and table toppers Jaffna Stallions.
The teams have been at the end of different poles in this tournament as the Stallions have tasted defeat on only one occasion. The Kandy Tuskers have been on the receiving end in 5 out of the 6 matches and find themselves in a very tough spot to make it to the play-offs.
The last time the two sides met, the Stallions dominated the Tuskers from the word go and ended up on the winning side by 54 runs. Not much has changed since the game as the downhill journey of Tuskers has continued.
Tuskers will come into the match on the back of a heavy 7-wicket defeat against the Colombo Kings. While, the Jaffna Stallion’s last match against the Dambulla Viiking, which was anticipated to be a high-octane thriller between the two top sides was, unfortunately, called-off as the rain decided to play the spoil-sport.
Can the Jaffna Stallions cement their place at the top of the table? Do the Tuskers still have some gas left in them to make a comeback?
Match Toss Time: 15:00 Local (15:00 IST)
Match Start Time: 15:30 Local (15:30 IST)
Match Venue: Mahinda Rajapaksa International Stadium, Hambantota
The conditions are expected to be ideal for the sport as it is expected to be a clear and sunny day. The temperature is expected to hover in the 27-degree Celsius range and the humidity is expected to be on the higher side- around the 70 percent mark at peak.
The pitch in Hambantota as we saw in this tournament has been in favor of the batsmen. The ball has been coming on well to the bat and is likely to behave the same way for the remaining encounters. Said that the team winning the toss will be looking to chase. Anything less than the 190 mark has seen to be chased down with ease.
With the match scheduled to take place in late noon, dew is not expected to come into play for this encounter.
The Kandy Tuskers are having a very poor season despite having one of the strongest squads in the league. Though the team is missing out on key players like Chris Gayle and Wahab Riaz, the squad still looks solid and they were expected to perform. The batting completely collapsed for the Tuskers in their last game against Colombo Kings and with nothing much to lose for Kusal Perera and Co. they are likely to go ahead with the strongest Xl for this encounter.
The Jaffna Stallions on the other side have been doing a wonderful job, losing just one game so far. With their spot in the playoffs almost a certainty now, the management would be looking to test their bench strength by bringing a few changes in the playing Xl. They would be looking to bring in Kyle Abbott in place of Duanne Olivier and Chaturanga de Silva in place of Johnson Charles.
Probable Playing Xl
Kandy Tuskers (KDT): Rahmanullah Gurbaz, Kusal Perera (c & wk), Kusal Mendis, Brendan Taylor, Asela Gunaratne, Irfan Pathan, Dilruwan Perera, Nuwan Pradeep, Lasith Embuldeniya, Vishwa Fernando, Naveen-ul-Haq
Jaffna Stallions (JST): Avishka Fernando, Johnson Charles (wk)/ Chaturanga de Silva, Minod Bhanuka, Shoaib Malik, Thisara Perera (c), Wanindu Hasaranga, Usman Shinwari, Vijayakanth Viyaskanth, Charith Asalanka, Suranga Lakmal, Duanne Olivier/ Kyle Abbott
KDT vs JST Fantasy Team
Minod Bhanuka, Kusal Perera, Avishka Fernado, Rahmanullah Gurbaz, Asela Gunaratne, Kusal Mendis, Wanindu Hasaranga, Thisara Perera, Naveen-ul-Haq, Nuwan Pradeep, Usman Shinwari
Captain Picks: Thisara Perera (JST), Kusal Perera (KDT)
VIce-captain Picks: Asela Gunaratne (KDT), Avishka Fernando (JST)
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