Tournament: Australia tour of Sri Lanka, 2022.
Date: July 08, 2022
Format: Test match
Venue: Galle International Stadium, Galle, Sri Lanka.
SL VS AUS MATCH PREVIEWS
Australia, led by Pat Cummins, started the series on an impressive note after winning the opening Test by 10 wickets. The hosts prepared a turning track and it backfired big time on them as Nathan Lyon picked up nine wickets, including a fifer in the first innings.
Mitchell Swepson was also impressed after he accounted for five Sri Lankan wickets. The visitors, in the meantime, have suffered a blow after Ashton Agar was ruled out due to a side strain.
Jon Holland has been called up as a replacement for the all-rounder. Cameron Green is also in decent form after winning the Player of the Match award for his 77-run knock in the first innings.
The Lankans, on the other hand, were fairly decent with the ball, but their batting wasn’t up to the mark.
That they were bowled out for 113 in their second innings shouldn’t keep them in a positive frame of mind. Skipper Dimuth Karunaratne and others need to pull up their socks big time for the hosts to stage a comeback in the series.
Sri Lanka is getting ready to host the Aussies in the second test match at the Galle International Stadium at Galle, Sri Lanka tomorrow. The Sri Lankan team lost the first test by a thumping margin of ten wickets. They had to endure a collapse in the second innings which saw them getting bundled out for 113 runs. To make the matters worse for the hosts, they will now be missing the services of Asitha Fernando, Jeffrey Vandersay, and Dhananjaya de Silva for this encounter. All these players tested positive for coronavirus after the first test. This is a major blow to the side as all of them are vital components of the Sri Lankan team combination. Sri Lanka will be led by Dimukh Karunaratne in this match. The Lankan captain has to perform better and take a lot of responsibility for avoiding a series loss in the test match.
During the last series for Sri Lanka, he scored a couple of huge fifties against Bangladesh. However, in the first game of the ongoing test series against Australia, he failed to cross the 30 runs mark in either inning. Ramesh Mendis is a 27-year-old all-rounder for Sri Lanka. He was the pick of their bowling in the first game. He took four wickets in the match. Mendis arrived at the crease in the number 8 position and contributed a bit with 22 runs. However, it was the Sri Lankan wicket keeper Niroshan Dickwella who scored the highest number of runs for his team in the Sri Lankan first innings. The keeper-batsman batted at the number 7 slot. But he is likely to get promoted in the batting order because Dhananjaya de Silva will not be playing this test.
Australia on the other hand is the world’s leading team in test matches. They dominated the first test in all the departments of the game with no real resistance from the Lankans. The spin trio played by Australia in the match with Travis Head, Mitchell Swepson, and Nathan Lyon managed to take 18 out of the 20 wickets that fell during the game. In the first innings for Australia, the inform opening batsman Usman Khawaja and the all-rounder Cameron Green scored the fifties. Usman Khawaja is an experienced campaigner for Australia. He continued his great form with the bat on this tour as well. During the first innings of the first test, he scored 71 runs. In the second innings, he remained unbeaten on naught. In the last five test matches he has played for Australia he has hit two hundred and three fifties. Cameron Green on the other hand is a younger all-rounder for Australia. The 23-year-old scored 77 runs in the Aussie first innings from just 109 balls in the first test. The all-rounder looks confident against spin bowling on the Galle wicket.
The rest of the Aussie batsmen struggled against some quality spin bowling on a helpful track in the first game. Nathan Lyon is an experienced bowler for Australia. The wily spinner is a key bowler in the Australian bowling attack. He was instrumental in the Sri Lankan fall in both innings of the first test match. He took 9 wickets in the game and will be keen to inflict some more pain on the Sri Lankan batsmen. Australia is likely to field another spinner in this game. He is Mitchell Swepson. The 28-year-old leggy took 5 wickets in the first test. However, he is a relative newcomer to the test match arena and has participated only in three matches thus far in the subcontinent conditions. He will be keen to make an impact on the match.
SRI LANKA VS. AUSTRALIA PITCH REPORT
The pitch in Galle helped the spinners to a large extent in the first Test and it’s not expected to be any different in the second. Batters need to bide their time to score big runs.
SRI LANKA VS. AUSTRALIA WEATHER FORECAST
There is a chance of rain on Friday and Tuesday, but the forecast for the other three days seems promising. The playing conditions will be breezy with temperatures around the 30-degree Celsius mark.
SRI LANKA VS. AUSTRALIA PROBABLE XIS
Dimuth Karunaratne (c), Pathum Nissanka, Kusal Mendis (wk), Oshada Fernando, Niroshan Dickwella, Dinesh Chandimal, Praveen Jayawickrama, Jeffrey Vandersay, Lasith Embuldeniya, Vishwa Fernando, Kasun Rajitha
David Warner, Usman Khawaja, Marnus Labuschagne, Steve Smith, Travis Head, Alex Carey (wk), Mitchell Swepson, Pat Cummins (c), Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood, Nathan Lyon
SL KEY PLAYERS
Dimuth Karunaratne – The skipper got in and got out in both innings of the First Test. He will be looking to build on his starts in this Test and strike his 15th century in this format.
Angelo Mathews – The experienced number four batter had to withdraw from the game due to illness after hitting 39 in the first innings. He is now recovered and his experience will be vital for the home side.
Ramesh Mendis – The 26-year-old off-spinner impressed with the dismissals of David Warner, Marnus Labuschagne, Cameron Green, and Alex Carey in the first innings last week.
AUS KEY PLAYERS
Steve Smith – The consistent batter was run out for only 6 runs in the first innings and did not get an opportunity to bat in the second innings. He will be desperate to make his mark on the series in this game.
Marnus Labuschagne – The number three batter produced a frantic batting display last week. He was dismissed reverse-sweeping and many commentators still think he has a point to prove when batting in Asia.
Nathan Lyon – The off-spinner moved up to 10th place in the all-time list of wicket-takers in Test cricket with his performance last week. He was dangerous throughout the game.
Australia didn’t quite perform well in the ODI series, but they have made a strong comeback in the Tests. After winning the first game, Pat Cummins and Co. look the favourites to win the second Test as well.