Ranked 9th on the ICC ODI rankings, leaving out five established players for World Cup, naming a captain that has not played ODI cricket in four years, nothing seems to be in favor of Sri Lanka in the 2019 World Cup.
This is all too familiar for the Sri Lankan team. A little over a decade ago in 1996 Sri Lanka stunned the world when they won the world cup but this time they will not have the heroics of the players like Sanath Jayasuriya and Muttiah Muralitharan but will still look to emulate the 1996 World Cup.
Recent Form: LLLLL
Last Completed ODI series: (Lost 5-0) vs South Africa
Best World Cup Finish: Champions (1996)
Predicted Finish: 8th
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Batsman to Watch: Angelo Mathews[player_details id=”16393″ align=”none”]
In the absence of Niroshan Dickwella who was omitted in the World Cup squad, Mathews is the top-ranked batsman in the Sri Lankan squad. With a healthy average, the 31-year-old can score at a good pace in the middle of the innings and score very quickly at the backend.
Bowler to Watch: Lasith Malinga[player_details id=”16403″ align=”none”]
Although Malinga has not been having his best year, he still has the ability to be at his best in the IPL final. The 35-year-old has 322 ODI scalps is the highest wicket-taker among current players and no active bowler has taken more wickets than him (43) in World Cups. This will be his fourth World Cup and he produced a hat-trick each in the 2007 and 2011 competitions, the only bowler to take two hat-tricks in World Cups.
Sri Lanka will begin their campaign at the Sophia Gardens in Cardiff when they take on New Zealand who whitewashed them 3-0 back in January but will be hopeful for a different result.