Before the start of series, it was actually predicted that this will be Sri Lanka’s best chance to register a series victory in India because some key Indian players MS Dhoni and Mohammed Shami were injured and Bhuvneshwar Kumar was rested. Even though Sri Lanka too didn’t come with a full-strength side especially the bowling attack, but still a good fighting performance was expected from them. Unfortunately, we have seen the reverse happening. Sri Lankans have been outclassed by the young Indian team in the first three matches. Their batting hasn’t clicked together and the bowling also has been good only in patches. The Indians have performed brilliantly in all departments and have deserved a series victory. But for now with all said and done, let’s shift our focus towards the fourth ODI that will be played 13th Novemeber at Kolkata.
It’s clear that Indians are riding high on confidence after three consecutive wins. Their batting has been exceptional and the questions of stability in the middle-order have all come to rest by Ambati Rayudu’s splendid century in the second match. The bowling has been the major factor in this series win. The absence of Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Mohammed Shami hasn’t been felt as the likes of Umesh Yadav, Ishant Sharma and Axar Patel have made amends on regular intervals. With two more ODIs to go, India have made some changes in their lineup. Rohit Sharma has returned to the side after he got injured on the England tour and he’ll replace Dhawan at the top of the order, who has been rested. Robin Uthappa has also been given a chance to prove himself ahead of the World Cup 2015. In bowling, Ishant Sharma has been rested due to stiff back. So, it’ll provide Dhawal Kulkarni the opportunity to make a mark for himself. Overall, the team still looks good and 4-0 is surely on the cards tomorrow.
Sri Lanka have a lot of things to sort out in all departments. But first of all, to mention, they have made a very silly move by resting Kumar Sangakkara for the remaining ODIs. When you are trailing by 3-0 in a series and are on the verge of a whitewash, resting key players makes no sense. Kusal Perera hasn’t done much at the top of the order and it would be interesting to see if he makes way for Lahiru Thirimanne at the top. The return of an in-form Dinesh Chandimal, who played well against West Indies A, is a good thing for them but whether he plays in the top four will be the most important thing to watch out for. Their bowling has been strengthened by the return of Ajantha Mendis and Shaminda Eranga and Mathews would be expecting a serious performance from them to register a win tomorrow.
Probable Playing XI For India:
Ajinkya Rahane, Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli, Ambati Rayudu, Suresh Raina, Robin Uthappa, Axar Patel, Karn Sharma, Stuart Binny, Umesh Yadav, Dhawal Kulkarni
Probable Playing XI For Sri Lanka:
Kusal Perera, Tillakaratne Dilshan, Dinesh Chandimal, Mahela Jayawardne, Angelo Mathews, Ashan Priyanjan, Thisara Perera, Seekkuge Prasanna, Nuwan Kulasekara, Ajanta Mendis, Shaminda Eranga
Image Courtesy: espncricinfo