Colombo Kings, Kandy Tuskers clash in the inaugural Lankan Premier League opener
Expect Kandy Tuskers to win their opening fixture.
Colombo Kings and Kandy Tuskers will lock horns in the opening game of inaugural Lankan Premier League to be played at Mahinda Rajapaksa International Cricket Stadium in Hambantota on Thursday.
Angelo Matthew will be looking to select their strongest playing XI for the opening game of the competition. With the likes of Laurie Evans and Qais Ahmed available selection, Kings will be keen to start their season on a positive note.
On the other hand, Kandy Tuskers have plenty of world-class players at their disposal for this opening fixture. Captain Kusal Perera is expected to lead the side for this season.
The franchise have suffered a minor setback as experienced overseas players like Faf du Plessis and Muhammad Hafeez are unavailable due to international duties for their respective countries.
In the batting department, the onus will be on the likes of Angelo Matthews, Dinesh Chandimal and Laurie Evans to make notable scores in this fixture.
All-rounder Angelo Matthews has excellent record in the T20 format. In 156 T20I matches, Matthews has accumulated 2499 runs at an average of 25.50 with nine half-centuries to his name. Besides Matthews, Dinesh Chandimal will be determined to show good form in order to a return to the national side.
England’s Laurie Evans has done well by playing in different T20 Leagues around the world. He holds an excellent batting record in the T20 format. He has accumulated 3624 runs in 156 T20I matches at an average of 33.55 with one century and twenty-five half-centuries.
All-rounder Isuru Udana is another high-profile player who has the ability to produce vitals runs with the bat and also takes wickets in the end overs.
In the bowling department, the side will be depending on the likes of Dushmantha Chameera, Qais Ahmed and Jeffery Vandersay to make crucial breakthroughs.
Afghanistan’s Qais Ahmed has been a reputable player in the T20 format and played in leagues like BBL, PSL and CPL. In previous BBL edition, Leg-spinner claimed 12 wickets in 15 matches at an economy rate of 8.14.
Angelo Matthews (captain), Daniel-Bell Drummond, Laurie Evans, Isuru Udana, Dinesh Chandimal, Karim Sadiq, Dushmantha Chameera, Qais Ahmad, Dhammika Prasad, Jeffery Vandersay, Amila Aponso.
Amila Aponso, Laurie Evans, Isuru Udana, Angelo Mathews, Manpreet Gony, Ashan Priyanjan, Andre Russell, Dushmantha Chameera, Dinesh Chandimal, Thikshila de Silva, Qais Ahmad
The likes of Chris Gayle, Liam Plunket and Wahab Riaz will not be available for Kandy Tuskers this season. Zimbabwe wicket-keeper Brendan Taylor has been named as a replacement for Chris Gayle, who has been ruled out of the competition due to injury.
In the batting department, the onus will be on the likes of Kusal Perera, Kusal Mendis and Rahmanullah Gurbaz to make notable score in this contest.
Kusal Perera is expected to lead from the front with the bat. Left-hander has a decent record in the shortest format of the game. In 101 T20I matches, Kusal Perera has accumulated 2249 runs at an average of 24.18 with 19 half-centuries to his name.
Besides Perera, Kusal Mendis, Rahmanullah Gurbaz and Brendan Taylor have the ability to produce key contributions with the bat.
Seekkuge Prasanna and Asela Gunaratne are two quality all-rounders in the squad. The duo is expected to play this opening fixture.
In bowling department, the onus will be on the likes of Irfan Pathan, Nuwan Pradeep and Dale Steyn to make crucial breakthroughs in this contest.
Kusal Perera (captain), Rahmanullah Gurbaz, Kusal Mendis (wk), Brendan Taylor, Asela Gunaratne, Seekkuge Prasanna, Lasith Embuldeniya, Nuwan Pradeep, Dale Steyn, Irfan Pathan, Dilruwan Perera.
Naveen-ul-Haq, Kaveeshka Anjula, Kamindu Mendis, Kusal Perera, S Prasanna, Kusal Mendis, Lasith Embuldeniya, Irfan Pathan, Asela Gunaratne, Nuwan Pradeep, Rahmanullah Gurbaz
|Hr||Temp||Rain||W. speed||W. direction||Clouds|
|00h||26||0 mm.||5.33 k/h||From: W||72%|
|03h||27||0 mm.||5.83 k/h||From: W||87%|
|06h||29||0 mm.||5.61 k/h||From: WSW||63%|
|09h||30||0 mm.||7.94 k/h||From: SW||1%|
|12h||28||0 mm.||7.11 k/h||From: WSW||0%|
|15h||27||0 mm.||5.4 k/h||From: WSW||24%|
|18h||26||0 mm.||3.96 k/h||From: W||16%|
|21h||25||0 mm.||4.44 k/h||From: W||10%|
The wicket might favor the batting units as rain is expected to take place during the course of the game. With wet conditions, the bowlers will find it hard to grip the ball.
Mahinda Rajapaksa Cricket Stadium in Hambantota is going to host the opening game of the inaugural Lankan Premier League between Colombo Kings and Kandy Tuskers.
With thundery showers expected for the game, the side that wins the toss and would be keen to bowl first. Average first innings score is around 130 runs.
Based on squad analysis, Kandy Tuskers will be favorites to win their game against Colombo Kings.
With likes of Brendan Taylor, Dale Steyn, Rahmanullah Gurbaz having played competitive cricket in the past couple of months, Kandy Tuskers will be in a better position to produce a strong show in this contest
Expect Kandy Tuskers to win their opening fixture.