Sri Lanka would look to improve their batting effort when they take on the West Indies in the second One Day International (ODI) of the three-match series at the Mahinda Rajapaksa Stadium in Hambantota today.
The hosts scraped a one-wicket win in the first ODI in Colombo despite enjoying a 111-run opening stand, as four top-order batsmen departed in relatively quick succession.
However, Thisara Perera and Wanindu Hasaranga came up with a late rescue act down the order to get the team over the line.
Meanwhile, the hard-fought win has bound the team well and put them in good spirit, according to Sri Lanka Coach Micky Arthur.
We’ve had a good chat around about our death bowling. David Saker has spoken to our bowlers and we’ve had a look at our plans
“We’ve had a good chat around about our death bowling. David Saker has spoken to our bowlers and we’ve had a look at our plans,” Arthur said yesterday.
“We have prepared well again. Hope we take the same attitude tomorrow and hopefully that contributes to a positive result for us,” he added.
Arthur also confirmed that Sri Lanka will field the same XI that played in the first ODI at the SSC Grounds in Colombo on Saturday.
Meanwhile, the visitors would be keen to get off to a positive start with the new ball as Sri Lanka challenged them in the middle and death overs.
With the ball, Sheldon Cottrell had a poor outing, while Alzarri Joseph and Keemo Paul shared five wickets between them to keep the Windies in the hunt. Young leg-spinner Hayden Walsh Jr. first impressed with a quick-fire cameo and then accounted for two wickets but was strangely not brought in early to complete his quota of overs.
We have prepared well again. Hope we take the same attitude tomorrow and hopefully that contributes to a positive result for us
Although the West Indies’ main attraction is the pace department they should also be looking to use their spinners to the fullest.
The weather is cricket-friendly with no rain threat and the pitch is expected to help the pacers with bounce while it is expected to be batsman-friendly as the game progresses. The spinners should get some purchase too.
Sri Lanka: Dimuth Karunaratne (Captain), Avishka Fernando, Kusal Perera, Kusal Mendis, Angelo Mathews, Dhananjaya de Silva, Thisara Perera, Wanindu Hasaranga, Isuru Udana, Lakshan Sandakan and Nuwan Pradeep.
West Indies (from): Sunil Ambris, Shai Hope, Darren Bravo, Roston Chase, Nicholas Pooran, Kieron Pollard (Captain), Jason Holder, Hayden Walsh, Keemo Paul, Alzarri Joseph and Sheldon Cottrell.