World T20 Second group stage
Today, 7:30 PM
M. Chinnaswamy Stadium, Bengaluru
Sri Lanka: Angelo Mathews (c) Dushmantha Chameera, Dinesh Chandimal (wk), Tillakaratne Dilshan, Lahiru Thirimanne, Suranga Lakmal. Rangana Herath, Shehan Jayasuriya, Chamara Kapugedara, Nuwan Kulasekera, Thisara Perera, Sachithra Senanayake, Dasun Shanaka, Milinda Siriwardena
West Indies: Darren Sammy (c), Samuel Badree, Sulieman Benn, Carlos Brathwaite, Dwayne Bravo, Johnson Charles, Andre Fletcher, Chris Gayle, Jason Holder, Ashley Nurse, Denesh Ramdin (wk), Andre Russell, Marlon Samuels, Evin Lewis, Jerome Taylor
Sri Lanka vs West Indies Prediction
Sri Lanka will win the toss and choose to ball first and win the match. The West Indies bludgeoned England aside but, to be fair, it was a one-man show. If the law of averages kicks in and the big man fails this time around, Sri Lanka’s mixed bag of bowlers could confuse Darren Sammy’s men enough to claim surprise victory.
Sri Lanka currently hold the upper hand over the West Indies in the T20 format and boast a 6-2 record from their eight encounters. That said, the last four contests have been split equally, and the Caribbean Islands won the teams’ latest meeting by 23 runs in November at Colombo.
Given his surprising return to the captaincy, Mathews has to carry a lot of weight on his shoulders, but his economical bowling and powerful hitting will be crucial if Sri Lanka are going to threaten the business end of the tournament. The 28-year-old took the new ball against Afghanistan and also provided the finishing flourish. Expect more of the same here.
While Gayle captures the headlines, Badree is an understated threat with the ball. Incredibly, the 35-year-old has returned an economy rate of 5.41 from 129 T20 appearances, the best of any bowler who has played the format. If the metronomic leg-spinner finds his range again, it will be four overs Sri Lanka will struggle to score in.