starts in
days hours mins

fixtures

All matches

ICC World Cup 2019 | Familiar Foes Battle as Proteas Take on Sri Lanka in Warm-up Tie

Cricketnext Staff |May 23, 2019, 2:52 PM IST
ICC World Cup 2019 | Familiar Foes Battle as Proteas Take on Sri Lanka in Warm-up Tie

South Africa and Sri Lanka would know each other well by now. Not too long ago, they played a full series in South Africa. Sri Lanka stunned everyone by sweeping the two Tests, before the hosts won the five ODIs and the three T20Is. They now meet again for the World Cup warm-up game at the Sophia Gardens in Cardiff on Friday (May 24).

Neither side is favourite for the tournament. Sri Lanka are nowhere close to that tag, having hardly won anything in ODI cricket recently. They've won only seven of their 26 matches since the start of 2018. Their only ODI win in 2019 came earlier this week against Scotland.

Surprisingly, South Africa too don't enter the tournament as hot contenders. It's surprising for two reasons; firstly, they're always seen as favourites before every world tournament. Secondly, they're in superb form in ODI cricket, having won eight of their ten ODIs this year. In fact, since the start of 2017, they've won eight of their 10 bilateral ODI series. But it's always the ICC events that are an issue, isn't it?

South Africa would want to, finally, prove that wrong.

LAST FIVE COMPLETED ODIs

South Africa: W W W W W

All against Sri Lanka, all by convincing margins.

Sri Lanka

L L L L W

The only win came against Scotland.

ISSUES TO FINE TUNE

South Africa

Will Amla open? Or will it be Aiden Markram? South Africa will use the warm-up matches to choose between the experienced pro and the promising youngster. Amla has not been in the best of forms recently, but that's only relative to his lofty standards. His recent numbers are still better than his competitors. Amla missed the last ODI series against Sri Lanka, and has not had much game time recently. The team needs him to hit form in the warm-ups for his experience will be crucial.

South Africa also have to test the fitness of their pacers - Dale Steyn, Lungi Ngidi and Kagiso Rabada. Steyn and Rabada had to return from the IPL with injuries, while Ngidi was ruled out of the entire tournament. How they turn up will be a talking point.

Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka have to fine-tune just about everything. They've got a new combination right at the top, with Dimuth Karunaratne coming in as opener and captain. Before the Scotland game, he last played an ODI in World Cup 2015. Karunaratne made a good start to his new role, scoring 77 to help his side post 322 for 8. His partner Avishka Fernando scored his maiden ODI half-century too, and Sri Lanka would hope for more of the same. A good beginning will solve half their problems.

IN FORM PLAYER

South Africa

Quinton de Kock: The opener has scores of 83, 81, 94, 121, 51 and 6 in his last six ODIs. He took that form forward into the IPL too, making 529 runs from 16 matches that played a big part in Mumbai Indians' title run.

Sri Lanka

Kusal Mendis: His form will be crucial to Sri Lanka's chances. He has been a promising youngster for a while now, and it's time to deliver at the biggest stage. Mendis has four half-centuries in his last 10 ODIs, but the highest score among them was the 66 he scored against Scotland. He has 15 half-centuries and just one century from 61 ODI innings. It's time to improve on the conversion rate.

SQUADS

South Africa: Faf du Plessis (capt), JP Duminy, David Miller, Dale Steyn, Andile Phehlukwayo, Imran Tahir, Kagiso Rabada, Dwaine Pretorius, Quinton de Kock, Anrich Nortje, Lungi Ngidi, Aiden Markram, Rassie van der Dussen, Hashim Amla, Tabraiz Shamsi.

Sri Lanka: Dimuth Karunaratne (capt), Angelo Mathews, Lasith Malinga, Kusal Perera, Lahiru Thirimanne, Avishka Fernando, Kusal Mendis, Dhananjaya de Silva, Jefferey Vandersay, Thisara Perera, Isuru Udana, Suranga Lakmal, Nuwan Pradeep, Jeewan Mendis and Milinda Siriwardana​.

Related stories

Also Watch

Cricket World Cup Points Table

Pos Team P W L T/NR PTS NRR
1
NZ
6 5 0 1 11 +1.30
2
AUS
6 5 1 0 10 +0.84
3
IND
5 4 0 1 9 +0.80
4
ENG
6 4 2 0 8 +1.45
5
BAN
7 3 3 1 7 -0.13
6
SL
6 2 2 2 6 -1.11
7
PAK
6 2 3 1 5 -1.26
8
WI
6 1 4 1 3 +0.19
9
SA
7 1 5 1 3 -0.32
10
AFG
7 0 7 0 0 -1.63

Team Rankings

Rank Team Points Rating
1 India 3631 113
2 New Zealand 2547 111
3 South Africa 2917 108
4 England 3663 105
5 Australia 2640 98
see more
Rank Team Points Rating
1 England 5720 124
2 India 5990 122
3 New Zealand 4121 114
4 South Africa 4647 111
5 Australia 4805 109
see more
Rank Team Points Rating
1 Pakistan 7365 283
2 England 4253 266
3 South Africa 4196 262
4 Australia 5471 261
5 India 7273 260
see more