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England Eye Strong Start Against Athapaththu-led Sri Lanka

Cricketnext Staff | Updated: November 10, 2018, 5:06 PM IST
England Eye Strong Start Against Athapaththu-led Sri Lanka

Having won the 50-over 2017 World Cup at home, England, with a well-rounded side, will fancy their chances of heading into the Caribbean and going the distance in the 2018 World T20.

However, their fortunes were dealt an early blow with Katherine Brunt being ruled out of the tournament. The pacer experienced a flare-up of an existing back injury during a warm-up match against India, and Fran Wilson was called in as her replacement.

The Heather Knight-led side possess a formidable batting line-up with Danielle Wyatt, Tammy Beaumont, and all-rounder Natalie Sciver – all capable of taking the game away from the opposition - all match-winners on their day.

Wyatt has had a formidable past 12 months, having slammed two centuries, one of which was a fabulous 61-ball 124 at the Brabourne Stadium against India which helped England chase 199 – the highest run-chase in the format.

The likes of Jenny Gunn, Anya Shrubsole and Danielle Hazell make up for an experienced bowling arsenal with left-arm spinner Sophie Ecclestone also in the mix.

While the side did not have the best of warm-up games, England's recent record in the 20-over format has been encouraging, with most of the players coming on the back of the their domestic T20 tournament Women's Super League.

(Image: ICC) (Image: ICC)

Sri Lanka, on the other hand, hold a poor recent record in the format. They lost a five-match Twenty20 International series 4-0 to India at home and rely heavily on their batting star and captain Chamari Athapaththu.

Kavisha Dilhari, Yashoda Mendis, Udeshika Prabodini and Shashikala Siriwadana do have a decent number of T20 matches under their belt, but need to be tested against the top opposition teams.

The side did not fare well in their warm-ups either, losing both their games against New Zealand and Ireland after being bowled out for 98 and 85 respectively. The batting, especially Athapaththu, will have to come good if they are to challenge a strong England side.

England: Heather Knight (c), Tamsin Beaumont, Sophia Dunkley, Sophie Ecclestone, Tash Farrant, Kirstie Gordon, Jenny Gunn, Danielle Hazell, Amy Jones (wk), Natalie Sciver, Anya Shrubsole, Linsey Smith, Fran Wilson, Lauren Winfield, Danielle Wyatt

Sri Lanka: Chamari Athapaththu (c), Nilakshi Damayanthi, Kavisha Dilhari, Inoshi Fernando, Ama Kanchana, Sugandika Kumari, Eshani Lokusooriyage, Hasini Madushika, Dilani Manodara, Yashoda Mendis, Udeshika Prabodani, Oshadhi Ranasinghe, Shashikala Siriwardana, Rebeka Vandort (wk), Sripali Weerakkody
First Published: November 10, 2018, 2:50 PM IST

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