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Sri Lanka Aim at Ending an Over Stretched Dry Spell in Test Cricket

Last Updated: April 20, 2021, 18:08 IST

Sri Lanka (Image: SLC Twitter)

Sri Lanka (Image: SLC Twitter)

A dry spell is often itching and the same is happening with Srilanka's Cricket team who is currently waiting with bated breath for their win

A dry spell is often itching and the same is happening with Sri Lankan Cricket team who is currently waiting with bated breath for their win in quite some time. It’s been ages since they last won a test match, a record, coach Mickey Arthur has ensured the players are unfortunately aware of.

Sri Lanka will start a two-match series against Bangladesh on Wednesday, aiming for its first test win since January 2020. The run since then has included two losses in South Africa, two losses at home to England and two draws in the Caribbean against the West Indies.

The Sri Lankan Cricket team is all set to start a two-match series against Bangladesh on Wednesday, hoping for its first test win since January 2020.

The dry spell has since then included two losses in South Africa, two losses at the home wicket to England and two draws in the Caribbean against the West Indies.

In the past six tests, Sri Lanka had its chance but somehow the game just couldn’t be bagged, the reason being some silly mistakes. A top-order, middle-order batting collapse, lousy fielding, dropped catches, injuries and poor use of the decision referral system to review umpiring calls came at their cost.

“We have spoken at length about taking that opportunity when it presents itself and applying pressure for a long period until the opposition inevitably breaks,” Arthur said. “If you take the West Indies series, we were in positions where we could have dominated but they managed to wriggle out of the situations.”

As far as the records show, Sri Lanka has won 16 of its 20 cricket tests against Bangladesh and lost only once — at Colombo in 2017 — however, three of the last eight matches have ended in a draw.

Before the test starts on Wednesday, the Sri Lankan team seems to have changed their strategies and has decided to bank on their fast bowlers more than an amateur spin department.

“We will look to get pitches that do give our pacers some assistance for sure, but I believe we have all bases covered and have the ability to have a balanced side with spin as well,” Arthur said.

Fast bowler Lahiru Kumara and former captain Angelo Mathews are expected to return to the line-up after skipping the West Indies series.

On the other hand, Team Bangladesh has struggled in recent months. There was an intense criticism after a home series loss to the West Indies and a tough tour of New Zealand, where Bangladesh lost all six white-ball games. Nevertheless, they look all pumped up for the game ahead, as seen via their tweets.

The unavailability of top all-rounder Shakib Al-Hasan and left-arm fast bowler Mustafizur Rahman due to the Indian Premier League will also be a test of depth.

“Sri Lanka are a great team at home. It will be challenging for us,” Bangladesh skipper Mominul Haque said. “We have to take up this challenge and get a good result.

“I think it will be a competitive series. Both teams have good pace bowlers (so) batting is going to be very important.”

Squads:

Sri Lanka: Dimuth Karunaratne (captain), Lahiru Thirimanna, Oshada Fernando, Pathum Nissanka, Angelo Mathews, Dhananjaya De Silva, Dasun Shanaka, Niroshan Dickwella, Suranga Lakmal, Lahiru Kumara, Vishwa Fernando, Dilshan Madushanka, Wanindu Hasaranga, Ramesh Mendis and Praveen Jayawickrama, Dinesh Chandimal, Asitha Fernando and Roshen Silva.

Bangladesh: Mominul Haque (captain), Abu Jayed, Ebadot Hossain, Mehidy Hasan, Liton Das, Mohammad Mithum, Mukidul Islam, Mushfiqur Rahim, Nayeem Hasan, Najmul Shanto, Nurul Hasan, Saif Hassan, Shadman Islam, Shohidul Islam, Shoriful Islam, Shuvagata Hom, Khaled Ahmed, Taijul Islam, Tamim Iqbal, Taskin Ahmed and Yasir Ali.

Umpires: Kumar Dharmasena and Ruchira Palliyaguruge.

TV umpire: Ravindra Wimalasiri. Match Referee: Ranjan Madugalle

(With AP Inputs)

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first published:April 20, 2021, 18:08 IST
last updated:April 20, 2021, 18:08 IST