India will look to complete a full whitewash across all three formats to complete their tour of Sri Lanka when they take on the islanders in the one-off T20I at Colombo on Wednesday. India are on a roll, winning the Test series 3-0, and the ODI series 5-0. Sri Lanka are struggling at the moment and face an uphill task to avoid the loss in the one-off T20I. Cricwizz takes a look at the strengths and weaknesses of the two teams ahead of the match.
An in-form batting line-up: Every batsman in the Indian squad has been among the runs in the series. They have a successful opening combination in Rohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan. Skipper Virat Kohli gives solidity to the line-up at No 3. Manish Pandey may be preferred over KL Rahul, who had a poor ODI series. MS Dhoni is back among the runs. Hardik Pandya is the ruthless hitter of the ball and lends depth to the batting line-up. Overall, it’s a line-up to die for.
Winning momentum: India have won eight matches on the trot in Sri Lanka and are on winning high. Captain Kohli has always specifically mentioned about carrying the momentum forward and they will be no let-off for the Sri Lankans. Kohli would like to sign off the tour with a win.
Consistent bowling: Indian bowling has come of age in this series. From Jasprit Bumrah, Bhuvneshwar Kumar to the second-string spinning attack, everyone has contributed towards India’s victory in the ODI series. It will be interesting to see how they fare in the shortest format of the game.
Complacency: India have to ward of complacency when they take on Sri Lanka in the one-off T20I. India will already be looking forward to go home and prepare for a tough limited-overs series against Australia. Hence, they are at risk to become complacent in the one-off T20I. Sri Lanka can catch them unawares.
Squad: Virat Kohli, Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, Lokesh Rahul, Manish Pandey, Ajinkya Rahana, MS Dhoni, Kedar Jadhav, Hardik Pandya, Axar Patel, YH Chahal, Shardul Thakur, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Kuldeep Yadav, Jasprit Bumrah.
Sri Lanka strengths:
Akila Dananjaya: Although he could not repeat his heroics in Pallekele ODI where he took 6/54 in the subsequent matches, Dananjaya poses enough challenges to make Indian batsmen dance to his variations. He will be hoping to help his team notch up at least one win, in this otherwise forgettable series for Sri Lanka.
New format, new energy: Sri Lanka can be competitive in the T20 format where one impact innings or one brilliant spell can turn the match in their favour. This format does not provide much chance to make a comeback and they will look to close all doors on India and win a game for their country.
Problems aplenty: From injuries to key players to the losing streak, nothing has gone right for the Sri Lanka cricket team. They have struggled to run India close in any of the matches so far. And they face an uphill task to avoid another loss. Sri Lanka face a tough battle within themselves to raise their performance in times of adversity.
Sri Lanka squad: Upul Tharanga (captain), Angelo Mathews, Niroshan Dickwella, Dilshan Munaweera, Dasun Shanaka, Milinda Siriwardana, Wanidu Hasaranga, Akila Dananjaya, Jeffrey Vandersay, Isuru Udana, Seekkuge Prasanna, Thisara Perera, Lasith Malinga, Suranga Lakmal and Vikum Sanjaya.