India vs Sri Lanka: Preview and Prediction
The 2023 World Cup has taken an interesting fold with various teams rumbling for the top four spots. India and Sri Lanka square off in match 33 of the marquee event at the iconic Wankhede Stadium, Mumbai.
India has been ever so dominant in the competition and is yet to be defeated. They have played six games so far and have earned 12 points, thereby slaying at the top of the table. They have gelled as a total unit and each of the departments has complemented one another brilliantly.
From the batting point of view, the big names- Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli are their top two run-getters of the mega-event. Impactful runs have also come off the blades of KL Rahul, Shubman Gill, and Suryakumar Yadav.
Jasprit Bumrah and Mohammed Shami have been brilliant with the ball while Kuldeep Yadav has been a gem with his left-arm wrist spin. Ravindra Jadeja has also made useful contributions as an all-rounder.
Hardik Pandya’s injury has allowed Mohammad Shami and Suryakumar Yadav’s inclusion to the side and it has fared well for the Men in Blue so far. The all-rounder is likely to be fit around the knockout stages. Until then, India is likely to bank on five regular bowlers.
On the other hand, Sri Lanka has had torrid times in the tournament and has blown hot and cold. They lost their first three games to kick off the campaign and followed it by a couple of wins. However, they suffered a setback against Afghanistan in their latest clash after Hashmatullah Shahidi and his men eclipsed the Lions by seven wickets.
Sri Lanka was the last team to get off the mark with some points in the tournament. They are also the team with the most number of players being used in their playing XI. The Chris Silverwood-coached community have featured 18 players in their first XI thus far in the World Cup.
The Sri Lankan team had a stronghold in the batting department at the start but the bowling failed. With the progression of the quadrennial event, the bowling has got better but the batting has started to tremble for the Lions.
What have they done so far?
The Indian team kicked off their World Cup campaign against the mighty Aussies and ended up trouncing them in Chennai. Chasing a total of 200 runs, the Men in Blue were pushed back to the wall as the scorecard read 2-3. Rahul and Kohli’s masterclass helped India revive the situation and turn the table.
It was followed by a comprehensive victory against Afghanistan on the back of Rohit’s ton. In their third game, arch-rivals Pakistan were embarrassed in Ahmedabad. India followed it by three more wins defeating Bangladesh, New Zealand, and England. Games against Bangladesh and England were more of a one-sided affair while New Zealand showed great intent in Dharamshala.
On the flip side, Sri Lanka initiated the World event by being on the wrong side of a historic feat. They were slammed for 428 runs by South Africa- the highest runs ever scored in CWC history.
In the second game against Pakistan, Sri Lanka incurred a narrow defeat due to Mohammad Rizwan’s brilliance. Australia thrashed them in their third encounter while the Lions bounced back against the Netherlands and followed it up with another win against defending champions England but Afghanistan steamrolled the Islanders in Pune in their recent game.
Head to Head Record
167 ODI matches have been played between Sri Lanka and India thus far. The Men in Blue have a great record with 98 wins while the Lions have earned 57 victories. One of the games was a tie while eleven matches had no result due to unfavourable weather conditions.
In the last ten ODI matches played between both nations, India has a dominant record, winning nine of them.
Rohit Sharma (India): The Indian skipper has been in stupendous form with the bat in hand. He is currently the leading run-getter for India in World Cup 2023 with 398 runs from six innings. Rohit has notched up one century and four 45-plus run scores.
The Indian captain was in amazing touch in the last game when the situation was quite tricky and helped his team get out of a deep hole. Sharma also has smacked 20 sixes, the maximum by an Indian individual in the ongoing tournament.
Dilshan Madushanka (Sri Lanka): If a team has to stop the Indian contingent they have to bowl well and scalp regular wickets. Dilshan Madushanka has been outstanding with the new cork thus far and will be keen to outsmart the Indian batters.
Indian batting is right-handed dominant in the batting department and therefore Madushanka has a serious chance of being a potential match-up. The pacer has pocketed 13 wickets from six matches including a four-fer against the Netherlands and a three-fer against Australia.
India: Rohit Sharma ©, Shubman Gill, Virat Kohli, Shreyas Iyer, KL Rahul (wk), Suryakumar Yadav, Mohammed Shami, Jasprit Bumrah, Kuldeep Yadav, Mohammed Siraj
Sri Lanka: Pathum Nissanka, Dimuth Karunaratne, Kusal Mendis © (wk), Sadeera Samarawickrama, Charith Asalanka, Angelo Mathews, Dhananjaya de Silva, Maheesh Theekshana, Dushmantha Chameera, Dilshan Madushanka, Kasun Rajitha
India is the favorite for this competition. Although the Sri Lankan unit cannot be underestimated, the Men in Blue seem to be in a league of their own with respect to their performance.