The South Africans empowered over the Lankans to seize the ODI series in favour of them. Now after an emphatic 2-1 victory in the ODI series, South Africans will be looking for an incredible performance even in the test series too while Sri Lanka will look to carry on with their dream run in tests in this year. The test series will comprise of 2 test matches and the first test will be played at Gallle from tomorrow, i.e. the 16th of July.
After playing fantastically in the ODI series, the Proteas will look to make a mark in the test series too. They have a strong squad which suits for the test. Also, Hashim Amla will lead the test side for them. They have dependant batsmen in their squad in the likes of De Kock, AB De Villiers, JP Duminy and off-course the skipper himself. Amla is in flying form and he struck two consecutive centuries in the 3-match ODI series. Also, their wicket-keeper batsman, Quinton De Kock has emerged to be one of the most dependable batsmen for them. In fact, he is very much consistent and has set a world record for becoming the youngest player to have scored 5 centuries in ODIs. He struck a century against Sri Lanka in the final ODI match. Coming to AB De Villiers, nothing more needs to be said about this man. He has been one of the iconic players for South Africa for quite sometime now and as a batsman, he is just totally perfect. Also, other batsmen in the likes of Duminy and Du Plessis will surely light up the South African batting. When it comes to bowling, South Africa possess one of the best bowling attacks in the world cricket at the present moment. With fast bowlers with sheer class like Dale Steyn and Morne Morkel opening the proceedings for them, it is of no doubt that they are the stronger bowling side in the series. Also they have Veron Phillander and Imran Tahir to assist the bowling attack. But apart from pace, their spinning department is a bit weak and in the sub-continental pitches, it is often seen that the side with better spinning options end up on the winning side. That might be a case for worry for the Proteas.
The Sri Lankan line up has made several changes from its ODI squad. Upul Tharanga has been called in the test squad. Sri Lanka had a fabulous test series against England a month before where they won 1-0 in a 2-match test series. Their skipper, Angelo Mathews has proved his captaincy skills and he is a major strength for the team with his all-round performances. Also, they have a great batting line up and Mahela Jayawardena will retire from Test Cricket soon. So this will be his last series against South Africa. So it is obvious that he will try his heart and soul out to put up his best show. Also they have another experienced batsman in the form of Kumar Sangakkara. Their batting line up is also empowered by the likes of Lahiru Thirmanne, Dinesh Chandimal and also the skipper himself. Also, the Sri Lankans possess a perfect bowling line up and they did show their strength in the series against England. Bowlers like Ajantha Mendis, Rangana Herath, Shaminda Eranga, Suranga Lakmal can come priceless for the team. And they did manage to take 20 English wickets in each of the tests against England in England.
It will be an interesting contest with both sides being equally strong and we hope for witnessing a perfect game of cricket.
Sri Lanka: Angelo Mathews (captain), Lahiru Thirimanne, Upul Tharanga, Kaushal Silva, Kumar Sangakkara, Mahela Jayawardene, Dinesh Chandimal, Kithuruwan Vithanage, Rangana Herath, Dilruwan Perera, Ajantha Mendis, Suranga Lakmal, Shaminda Eranga, Dhammika Prasad, Chanaka Welegedara.
South Africa: Alviro Petersen, Dean Elgar, Hashim Amla (captain), Faf du Plessis, AB de Villiers, JP Duminy, Stiaan van Zyl, Vernon Philander, Morne Morkel, Dale Steyn, Imran Tahir, Kyle Abbott, Quinton de Kock, Dane Piedt.