Australia host Sri Lanka on Sunday at Adelaide Oval for the first of three T20s against Sri Lanka. 12 months out from the T20 World Cup, both teams are looking to build their squads and their confidence towards the big dance.
Sun Oct 27, Adelaide Oval, 2.30pm
Australia squad: Aaron Finch (c), Ashton Agar, Alex Carey, Pat Cummins, Glenn Maxwell, Ben McDermott, Kane Richardson, Steve Smith, Billy Stanlake, Mitchell Starc, Ashton Turner, Andrew Tye, David Warner, Adam Zampa.
A lot of familiar faces are included in Australia’s T20 squad to take on Sri Lanka including Test stars Steve Smith, Pat Cummins and Mitchell Starc, with the only one to play a T20 game in the last two years being Starc who played only a single T20 match. The selectors have called upon a bunch of proven talent from the domestic Big Bash League in the likes of Ashton Agar, Ben Maxwell, Kane Richardson, Ashton Turner and Andrew Tye, who should create a healthy mix with international limited overs specialists in Aaron Finch, Alex Carey and Glenn Maxwell.
Sri Lanka squad: Lasith Malinga (c), Kusal Perera, Kusal Mendis, Danushka Gunathilaka, Avishka Fernando, Niroshan Dickwella, Dasun Shanaka, Shehan Jayasuriya, Bhanuka Rajapaksa, Oshada Fernando, Wanindu Hasaranga, Lakshan Sandakan, Nuwan Pradeep, Lahiru Kumara, Isuru Udana, Kasun Rajitha.
The Sri Lankan team consist of a mix of relative rookies and experienced stalwarts with the familiar faces of Lasith Malinga, Kusal Perera and Nuwan Pradeep leading their line-up.
Australia will look to make a bold statement in this best of three series as they come into this as the number five team in the world, looking to build towards hopefully a maiden T20 World Cup title. They face a Sri Lankan team that has managed a rather poor 8 wins and 15 losses in the short form of the game over the last two years. They do however come into this match sweeping the number one T20 team in the world in Pakistan 4-0, and should have plenty of confidence coming into this series.
Due to not knowing which team will be fielded, and it being the first game in this series, makes this game a tough one to bet on. What I do feel is there won’t be an abundance of runs. Sri Lanka’s bowling attack is more than just Malinga these days and they can keep Australia relatively tied down especially early. Australia so far in the last year have consistently failed at the top of the order and I don’t see them coming out the gates at a fast rate, whereas Sri Lanka are likely to attack from the offset. Sri Lanka to be the highest scoring team in the first 6 overs looks value to me. My other thought is that I don’t see the total match runs being overly high and at an Adelaide Oval, where consistent 150s are scored in T20 internationals, mixed with two strong bowling attacks I think the under total match runs is also a worthwhile play.
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