Moments of The Day: Hasaranga’s Hat-Trick, Miller-Rabada’s Finishing Defines Close Game
Pathum Nissanka has been one of the most promising names in Sri Lanka’s domestic circuit, boasting a first class average of 64.45 & scoring his first ton within 4 Tests. With this 72, I am glad he has transferred his talent in T20Is.
Temba Bavuma has been under scrutiny ever since his Test debut and more so, since captaincy. His 46 (46) might not look inspiring, but in this World T20, each team needs a middle order batter that can grind it out. Also his leadership with the QDK saga has been brilliant. Supporting his teammate all the way, while standing up for the movement at the same time.
Let us talk about David Miller. In 2018 & 2020, he averaged 20.16 with 113.08 SR and 25.00 average at 120.48 SR respectively. He had a good 2019, which kept him in the team but he is flourishing this year – 46.50 at 148.80. This match with the World Cup on the line, he struck two of the cleanest sixes of the World Cup, with Rabada hitting the last 4 to give South Africa a close victory. Miller’s career phases- Killer Miller, Accumulator Miller, Gone Miller….and the Old Miller is back!
Broken Cricket Dream of the Day: Can SL Keep Playing the Same Brand of Cricket?
SL are one of the only countries playing a positive brand of Cricket regardless of the situation. The attitude helped them win 4 in 4, but with 2 consecutive losses including a close one here might dent their confidence. Can they continue in a similar fashion?
T20 World Cup Points Table, Stat Alert
No need to go elsewhere for the Points Table, Highest Run Scorer, Highest Wicket Taker, Most Catches, and Most Dismissals. We will keep updating it in every article!
Toss: Australia won the toss and chose to field first.
Venue: Dubai International Cricket Stadium, Dubai, UAE
Umpires: Aleem Dar & Richard Illingworth
What Actually Happened
Winner: Australia won by 7 wickets
Scores: Sri Lanka 154/6 – Australia 155/3
Player of the Match: Adam Zampa 2/12
Adam Zampa (4-0-12-2)
Wanindu Hasaranga (4-0-22-2)
Charith Asaslanka 35 (27), Kusal Perera 35 (25)
David Warner 65 (42)
Moments of The Day: Australia Has Woken Up
When Kusal Perera & Charith Asalanaka were batting, Sri Lanka could do no wrong. The pulls and straight sixes were a delight to watch. Sri Lanka’s promise was coming back.SL 78/1 in 9.3 overs.
Then came the duo of Mitchell Starc and Adam Zampa. Within three overs, Sri Lanka collapsed to 94/5, including a beautiful yorker by Starc to Perera. Another good innings by Rajapaksa (33*) and support from captain Dasun Shanaka got SL to a decent 154/6.
However this was no challenge for Australia as the old horse returned. 70 run opening partnership (Finch 37) and Warner’s 65 silenced the critics. Also, who said Steve Smith cannot bat in T20s? He has been crucial in these low scoring chases recently.
Warner, Finch, Smith, Starc, Cummins, Hazlewood, Zampa all found form. Australia are smelling a World Cup semi-final spot. Beware of this team.
Broken Cricket Dream of the Day: Sri Lanka Finally Lose
Sri Lanka’s journey in this World Cup has been pitch perfect. For the first hour, it seemed that the new style of their cricket would take them to a fifth victory. That was not to be, and now couple of crucial games follow due to this loss.
The Broken Dream of the Day – Kusal Perera’s dropped catch – Has to rank among the worst dropped catches of all time and let Warner back into the game.
England Vs Sri Lanka 2021 Series Review. The #1 ranked team in the ODI Super League against the #11 team—a lopsided predictable series.
As we speak, England’s second string team is dominating Pakistan in an ODI series, but England found young guns in the Sri Lanka series as well. Liam Livingstone & Sam Billings progressed their case in the middle order, Dawid Malan & Eoin Morgan silenced their critics, and Joe Root & Jos Buttler did what they usually do. On the bowling front, Sam Curran, David Willey, Chris Woakes, and Tom Curran came to the party.
For Sri Lanka, the story goes from bad to worse. Apart from Dushmantha Chameera, Wanindu Hasaranga, Dhananjaya de Silva, and Dasun Shanaka, there was nothing much of note. Scores of 129, 111, and 91 in the T20Is along with 185, 241, & 166 in the ODIs shows how much ground the Lankans have lost in the last decade.
Add to that, the bio-bubble suspension of Kusal Mendis, Danushka Gunathilika, and Niroshan Dickwella, contract struggles, Thisara Perera’s retirement at 32, Angelo Mathews’ retirement consideration, numerous captaincy changes, and COVID induced India-Sri Lanka series, Sri Lanka have hit absolute rock-bottom.
Chris Woakes: 3-0-14-1 (1st T20I), Rested, 4-0-9-1 (3rd T20I), 10-5-18-4 (1st ODI), Rested, 10-3-28-2. Dream figures. Playing his first T20I since 2015/16 season, you would expect him to get a consistent run. Yet he has only played 3 T20Is, 6 Tests, and 7 ODIs over the last two years. Yes, England do play lots of cricket and have tough competition for spots, but Woakes at 32, is in his prime and is bowling beautifully. Resting him after 3 over spells just does not make sense (unless the England team management are hiding something).
David Willey & Sam Curran were the pick of the bowlers in the ODI series. In the 2nd ODI, they combined for 9 wickets together. Curran’s opening spell – reducing SL to 21/4 within 7 overs was especially spectacular. Willey has had a stop-start career and has always taken his opportunity. It is time he gets a consistent run. Was unlucky to miss out on the 2019 WC spot due to the Jofra Archer’s emergence.
Silencing the critics feat Dawid Malan, Eoin Morgan, and Tom Curran.
Tom Curran produced a 10-0-35-4 in the final ODI after a couple of expensive years.
One criticism is that since his record-breaking innings against Afghanistan, he hasn’t had much of note. Performance with KKR in the IPL? Not that great either. Meanwhile, Alex Hales is making runs for fun in the various T20 leagues. Dropping Morgan and picking Hales gained some traction in social media recently. Hence match-winning partnership with Joe Root in the 2nd ODI was timely.
Malan, the #1 ranked T20I batter, was under the hammer for below-par performances in slow subcontinent tracks. An exhilarating 76 in the 3rd T20I should solidify his case for the T20I World Cup.
Dushmantha Chameera has been the only positive for Sri Lanka fast bowling over the last year. He was the best bowler for Sri Lanka this tour in 3 out of 5 matches. Bowls with good pace, hits the deck—he has all the elements to be a Sri Lankan great.
Wanindu Hasaranga has been the find for Sri Lanka since the West Indies tour earlier this year. He is currently averaging 15.76 at 6.75 economy and is now unleashing his all-round potential. In this England series, he batted in the middle order with handy knocks of 54, 26, & 20.
Dhananjaya de Silva played a gem of a counterattacking knock in the 2nd ODI, scoring 91 runs. Pure timing and a great catch as well. Unfortunate to miss that century.
We look forward to early T20 World Cup 23-player squad prediction as of this series. Who knows how many changes we will get to see with Sri Lanka.
Jason Roy, 2. Jos Buttler (WK), 3. Dawid Malan, 4. Jonny Bairstow, 5. Eoin Morgan*, 6. Ben Stokes, 7. Sam Curran, 8. Moeen Ali, 9. Jofra Archer, 10. Adil Rashid, 11. Mark Wood
Squad: 12. Sam Billings, 13. Liam Livingstone, 14. Tom Curran, 15. Chris Jordan, 16. Saqib Mahmood, 17. James Vince, 18. Tom Banton, 19. Joe Root, 20. Reece Topley, 21. Liam Dawson, 22. Matt Parkinson, 23. Phil Salt
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