The undefeated Sri Lanka have been the standouts of the Cricket World Cup Qualifier but will come up against an orange surge in the final as the Netherlands ride a wave of stunning success.
Sri Lanka and Netherlands have taken different paths through the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup Qualifier 2023 to book their spots in the tournament final as well as the last two tickets to the main event in India later this year.
The 1996 World Cup champions have brushed aside each of their opponents at the Cricket World Cup Qualifier, including their fellow finalists by 21 runs in the Super Six stage, as part of a commanding seven-match winning streak.
Sri Lanka have only conceded more than 200 runs once, when their first-place finish in the Super Six stage was confirmed well before their clash with the disappointing West Indies, and will line up in the final with several of the leading batters and bowlers from the tournament.
Netherlands have only lost one other match at the Cricket World Cup Qualifier, to hosts Zimbabwe in the group stage, while clinching two of the more remarkable and important results in their history.
The Dutch secured two valuable points to carry into the Super Six stage when matching West Indies’ total of 374 then thumping them in the Super Over as all-rounder Logan van Beek smashed a record 30 runs from six balls.
Netherlands later snatched their ICC Men's Cricket World Cup spot in a do-or-die clash with Scotland when Bas de Leede steered them toward their target of 278 within 44 overs to overtake their opponents on net run-rate and climb into the all-important top two in the standings.
While Sri Lanka have been the form team of the tournament, it is hard to discount the Netherlands causing one last shock and beating their opponents for the first time ever in an ODI when they meet in the Cricket World Cup Qualifier final.
What the captains said
“As a full member country, it’s important to win this series and the way we have played in this tournament, I am sure we will do well and win.
“What is important is to continue the winning streak while controlling our strengths.”
- Sri Lanka captain Dasun Shanaka
“Going into the tournament, qualifying was part of it, but we wanted to win the tournament.
“So once we celebrated qualifying, we’ve moved straight onto preparing for this game and we’re looking forward to hopefully playing a good game of cricket.”
- Netherlands captain Scott Edwards
- Sri Lanka: Pathum Nissanka, Sadeera Samarawickrama, Kusal Mendis (wk), Charith Asalanka, Dhananjaya de Silva, Sahan Arachchige, Dasun Shanaka (c), Wanindu Hasaranga, Maheesh Theekshana, Matheesha Pathirana, Dilshan Madushanka
- Netherlands: Max O'Dowd, Vikramjit Singh, Wesley Barresi, Noah Croes, Teja Nidamanuru, Scott Edwards (c & wk), Saqib Zulfiqar, Logan van Beek, Ryan Klein, Aryan Dutt, Clayton Floyd