New Zealand vs Sri Lanka Preview: TSR presents Predicted Playing 11, Toss prediction and Weather report for Match 3 of Cricket World Cup 2019
With the ‘Battle of the crown’ having commenced, the excitement of the fans are at the peak, and will continue for the rest one-and-a-half months for sure. On Day 3 of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 we will witness the formidable New Zealand clashing against a transition-prone Sri Lankan side at the Sophia Gardens in Cardiff.
The Kiwis had won their first Warm-up game against the formidable Indian side, while the bowling received a forgetful hammering in the second game against the Windies, conceding 421 runs in 50 overs. They had arrived England on the back of an impressive 3-0 victory over the strong as ever Bangladesh side. Thus, they will commence their campaign against the Lankans on a confident note.
The Sri Lankans have been all over the place for quite some time now. They have a new ODI captain- Dimuth Karunaratne, who has just played one ODI for Sri Lanka since the 2015 World Cup. In fact they have had 7 captains in the last 4 years, which clearly reflects that nothing’s well in their camp ahead of the World Cup. To add on to their woes, they have tried and tested 57 players, comprising 28 debutantes since the 2015 World Cup!
The Kiwis despite having two contrasting games in the Warm-up stage, have almost had most of the facets of their sorted out. Barring the second opener in the batting line-up they have a more than just decent 3 batsmen in the Top 4. The second opener alongside Martin Guptill, will be a toss between Colin Munro and Henry Nicholls. The latter has, in the 3-match ODI series against Bangladesh has proven that he can bat with the new, swinging ball with 2 half-centuries in 3 mathes. Munro, however has been out of the team owing to poor form, but his experience and reputation with the bat, is what makes him a valuable addition in the squad. Skipper Kane Williamson at no.3 and veteran Ross Taylor at no.4 have been in prime form as well off-late.
Tim Southee catching up with @radiosportnz commentator Bryan Waddle in Cardiff. You can follow every @cricketworldcup match LIVE with Radio Sport and @skysportnz in New Zealand. #CWC19 #BACKTHEBLACKCAPS pic.twitter.com/Xn1O0uc48U
— BLACKCAPS (@BLACKCAPS) May 31, 2019
The fast bowling duo of Trent Boult and Tim Southee have been magnificent for the Black Caps since the previous World Cup in 2015. It is their third seamer, which might be a cause of worry for the selectors. Both Matt Henry and Lockie Ferguson failed to impress in the two Warm-up matches.
Sri Lanka, will field a completely different team than what we have seen in the past two years. The only thing that is changing faster than the players is the people selecting the players. They have won just 5 of 28 ODIs since the year 2018. They also lost both the Warm-up games against South Africa and Australia and would need more than just a miracle to stand a chance to compete against any of the 9 teams in this World Cup.
Their skipper Karunaratne and veteran batsman Angelo Mathews looked in good touch during the warm-up matches. The batting department possesses some serious talent in the form of Kusal Parera, Kusal Mendis, and Lahiru Thirimanne, with the lone in-form batsman Thisara Parera at the lower-middle order. But, it is their bowling which needs some serious contemplation. A lot will depend upon their experienced pacers Suranga Lakmal and Nuwan Pradeep- who did not impress during the Warm-up games, but have potential to trouble the batsmen with the new ball. Their spinners- Jeevan Mendis, and Jeffrey Vandersay will play a crucial role during the middle-overs despite the recent dismal performances.
New Zealand vs Sri Lanka- Predicted Playing 11
Henry Nicholls should get a game over Colin Munro, courtesy his good performances recently facing the new ball. With the Kiwi wicket-keeper Tom Latham recovering from injury, it will not be a poor decision to hand him his debut International ODI cap, in a World Cup game. He was impressive with his 106 off 89 deliveries in the Warm-up match against the Windies.
Jimmy Neesham has performed better in New Zealand colours than Colin De Grandhomme and should feature alongside their spinner all-rounder, Mitchell Santner. While both Lockie Ferguson and Matt Henry were not able to impress the selectors in the Warm-up matches, the fact that Ferguson featured in both the games, the selectors have perhaps made up their mind on the selecting him over Henry.
The leg-spinner Ish Sodhi should become an automatic selection, considering the vital role spinners are expected to play in the middle-overs in this World Cup.
For the Sri Lankans, their opening combination is likely going to be the skipper Karunaratne and the southpaw Lahiru Thirimanne. Left-hander Avishka Fernando’s injury might keep him out of tomorrow’s game.
The two wicket-keeper batsmen-Kusal Parera and Kusal Mendis will be an automatic selection as they have performed decently for Sri Lanka off-late.
In the bowling department, it will be the old War Horse, Lasith Malinga who will lead the pace attack alongside Nuwan Pradeep or Suranga Lakmal. In the spin department it should be the experienced Jeevan Mendis along with either Jeffrey Vandersey or the left-arm spinner cum attacking batsman Milinda Siriwardana.
New Zealand Playing 11
Martin Guptill, Henry Nicholls, Kane Williamson (c), Ross Taylor, Tom Blundell (Wk), Jimmy Neesham, Mitchell Santner, Lockie Ferguson, Tim Southee, Ish Sodhi, Trent Boult.
Sri Lanka Playing 11
Kusal Parera (Wk), Dimuth Karunaratne (c), Lahiru Thirimanne, Kusal Mendis, Angelo Mathews, Dhananjaya de Silva, Jeevan Mendis, Milinda Siriwardene/ Jeffrey Vandersay, Thisara Parera, Lasith Malinga, Suranga Lakmal.
New Zealand vs Sri Lanka- Pitch and Weather Condition
The weather will remain mostly cloudy, with temperature being at 22 degrees Celsius. With precipitation forecast at only 10% tomorrow, rain is not expected to play a spoilsport tomorrow.
The Cardiff pitch provides some assistance to the pacers with the new ball, but becomes easier for the batsmen as the game progresses. The last match played here was the Warm-up match between India and Bangladesh, where the former smashed 359/7 in their 50 overs. So, the fans can expect another run-fest at the Sophia gardens tomorrow.
Though most of the grounds in England are high-scoring ones, the teams are tempted to field first once they win the toss, as the wicket gets better to bat on as the innings progresses. The Cardiff pitch story is no different. Hence, the team that wins the toss is expected to bat first.
Where would the match telecast?
The clash between the two sides will be broadcast live on the Star Sports network and Hotstar, and will commence from 03:00 IST.