India will begin 2020 with its familiar opponent, Sri Lanka in the first T20I at Barsapara Stadium in Guwahati. The hosts are high on confidence after winning back to back series against Bangladesh and the West Indies and they would like to continue their good form going while playing at home. On the other hand, Sri Lanka who has an inexperienced squad will like to begin their year on a high.
The 2020 T20 World Cup will be the ultimate goal for both the teams and they would like to tick every possible box in their preparation for the mega event. India is troubled by injuries as swing bowlers Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Deepak Chahar have been ruled out due to injuries. However, India’s ace pacer Jasprit Bumrah is making a comeback and all the eyes will be on the gun fast bowler.
India will be favorites.
Shikhar Dhawan also comes back into the squad and as Rohit Sharma has been rested for the series, the southpaw will open the innings with in-form KL Rahul. India’s middle-order has often disappointed with their performance and they would like to deliver the goods.
On the other hand, veteran right-hander Angelo Mathews makes a comeback to the Sri Lankan T20I squad after a long time. The all-rounder had last played for the Island nation back in August 2018 and he would like to hit the ground running. Mathews, the former skipper, will also add solidarity in the middle order.
Meanwhile, Nuwan Pradeep was ruled out due to ankle injury and Kasun Rajitha has been named as the replacement. Sri Lanka has a young squad and they would aim to be at their best to compete with the Indian team.
India has won 11 T20I matches against Sri Lanka and would like to keep the good show.
Match Prediction: There is no doubt that India will begin the match as red-hot favorites. The hosts are in fine form and would aim to continue their domination in the home conditions. Sri Lanka will need to play out of their skin to challenge India.