Watch Bangladesh vs Sri Lanka Live Cricket Match
Bangladesh and Sri Lanka, who put forth a decent showing in the recently concluded World Cup, face each other a series of three ODIs, the first of which is being held on Friday. While a couple of new faces will take the field for the Sri Lankans, an era of Sri Lankan cricket comes to an end as Lasith Malinga plays his last ODI for the national side. They will look to win it for the wily old pacer although Bangladesh isn’t ones to take lightly. Even without their premier allrounder, Shakib Al Hasan, Bangladesh is quite strong on paper and would consider themselves to be slight favorites on foreign turf.
A similar outlook to the side that featured in the World Cup is expected with Karunaratne providing the anchor at the top of the order. Explosive batsmen such as Kusal Perera and Avishka Fernando should bat around him while much is expected from Kusal Mendis and Angelo Mathews. Shehan Jayasuriya, who had a successful stint with the A-side, is in for a starting berth along with the returning Akila Dhananjaya. Nuwan Pradeep and Isuru Udana will feature alongside Malinga in what is the Mumbai Indians pacer’s last game.
Possible XI: Karunaratne (C), Kusal Perera (WK), Fernando, Mendis, Jayasuriya, Mathews, Dhananjaya de Silva, Thisara Perera, Udana, Pradeep, Malinga and Akila.
Similar to their opponents, Bangladesh shouldn’t be making many changes to their World Cup preferred eleven with Shakib Al Hasan’s spot being taken up by Mohammad Mithun. Mahmudullah Riyad will bat in the middle order in place of Liton Das, which also makes a place for Sabbir Rahman. The bowling unit will look more or less the same with an in-form Mustafizur Rahman their go-to man in the format.
Possible XI: Tamim(C), Sarkar, Mithun, Rahim (WK), Riyad, Sabbir, Mosaddek, Reza, Mehidy, Mustafizur and Taskin.
Wicket-keeper: Mushfiqur Rahim and Kusal Perera had great outings in the World Cup and are the preferred candidates in this match as well. Both of them are slated to bat in the top order and should score some points with their keeping skills as well.
Batsmen: Both Tamim Iqbal and Soumya Sarkar, who open the batting for Bangladesh, are picked in the side considering the nature of the pitch. Avishka Fernando is another such individual who should make good use of the conditions while one of Kusal Mendis or Dimuth Karunaratne should suffice as the fourth and final batting option.
All-rounders: Two big-hitting spin allrounders in Dhananjaya de Silva and Mosaddek Hossain Saikat are picked in the side after their exploits in the World Cup. If an extra option in the all-rounder’s department is required, Thisara Perera is the preferred option with his ability to pick wickets towards the death being vital on this surface.
Bowlers: With this being his last match for Sri Lanka in this format, Lasith Malinga is a must-have in the fantasy team along with the likes of Mustafizur Rahman and Mehidy Hasan Miraz. Mohammad Saifuddin, who featured in the top 5 list of most yorkers bowled in the World Cup, is also a decent option and could replace one of Mustafizur or Mehidy if required.
Captain: Tamim Iqbal had a sub-par World Cup where he couldn’t manage to provide a good start at the top of the order for the Bangladeshis. Along with Kusal Perera and Mushfiqur Rahim, Tamim Iqbal is one of the frontrunners for the mantle of captaincy.