Galle Gladiators’ quest for first win in the season
Dambulla Viiking to win
It is Game No. 12 in the Lanka Premier League 2020 and Galle Gladiators face an uphill challenge as they face the confident Dambulla Viiking. The Gladiators went down to the Jaffna Stallions in the last game in what was another bad show from their bowlers. Dambulla Viiking on the other hand earned their third win of the season as they defeated the Kandy Tuskers.
The Gladiators haven’t tasted victory in the season yet and have problems compounding on them due to the sudden exit of their regular skipper Shahid Afridi from the tournament. The side would need to regroup to keep its hopes alive for the semifinal. Viiking on the other hand have played well as a team and they would look to retain their position on the points table with a win here.
Dasun Shanaka’s side has played well this season. They didn’t have the big names in their squad but the side has now moved to the second position on the points table with three wins in four games. They defeated the Kandy Tuskers by 5 wickets in the last game and shall look to exploit the poor form that the Gladiators are in at the moment.
The side is struggling at the top as openers Niroshan Dickwella and Upul Tharanga haven’t been in the best of form and the side would need a good start from them here. In Angelo Perera, Samit Patel and Shanaka they have players doing well in the middle order. With Anwar Ali and Samiullah Shinwari down the order, the batting line-up looks good for the moment.
The bowling attack has done well in the last two games where Kasun Rajitha and Ramesh Mendis have bowled well. The side would be looking for early wickets from Anwar Ali in the next game. In Sachindu Colombage, Shanaka, Patel and Malinda Pushpakumara they have good depth in their bowling.
Dasun Shanaka (c), Niroshan Dickwella (wk), Upul Tharanga, Samit Patel, Angelo Perera, Ramesh Mendis, Samiullah Shinwari, Anwar Ali, Malinda Pushpakumara, Sachindu Colombage, Kasun Rajitha
Niroshan Dickwella, Ramesh Mendis, S Tyagi, Kasun Rajitha, Samiullah Shenwari, Upul Tharanga, Dasun Shanaka, Anwar Ali, Malinda Pushpakumara, Samit Patel, Angelo Perera
Bhanuka Rajapaksa who replaced Shahid Afridi as the skipper in the last game couldn’t turn the fortunes of his side. They went down by 5 wickets against the Jaffna Stallions in what was their best performance so far in the season. Having suffered four consecutive losses the side will have to win this to keep a window of opportunity open for a place in the semi-finals.
Openers Danushka Gunathilaka and Ahsan Ali did well in the last game and the side would be hoping for a similar show from them in this game. Chadwick Walton did well in the last game and so did Azam Khan. The side would however look for more contributions with the bat from the likes of Rajapaksa and Shehan Jayasuriya as these two players haven’t contributed much so far.
Jayasuriya and Asitha Fernando bowled well in the last game but the rest of the bowling attack leaked runs and this has been the problem for the side right through the season. Mohammad Amir’s form is bit of concern for the side at the moment and he will have to do well for the side to win here. Dhananjaya Lakshan and Akila Dananjaya would also be expected to bowl well in this must-win game.
Bhanuka Rajapaksa (c), Danushka Gunathilaka, Ahsan Ali, Dhananjaya Lakshan, Azam Khan (wk), Chadwick Walton, Shehan Jayasuriya, Lakshan Sandakan, Mohammad Amir, Akila Dananjaya, Asitha Fernando
Ahsan Ali, Asitha Fernando, TAM Siriwardana, Dhananjaya Lakshan, Bhanuka Rajapaksa, Shehan Jayasuriya, Mohammad Amir, Danushka Gunathilaka, Lakshan Sandakan, Azam Khan, Chadwick Walton
|Hr||Temp||Rain||W. speed||W. direction||Clouds|
|00h||26||0 mm.||5.45 k/h||From: WSW||72%|
|03h||27||0 mm.||5.49 k/h||From: WSW||89%|
|06h||29||0 mm.||4.72 k/h||From: SW||95%|
|09h||29||0.69 mm.||7.01 k/h||From: SW||100%|
|12h||27||0.45 mm.||7.08 k/h||From: SW||100%|
|15h||26||0 mm.||5.92 k/h||From: WSW||96%|
|18h||26||0 mm.||4.52 k/h||From: WSW||92%|
|21h||25||0 mm.||3.96 k/h||From: WSW||50%|
There would be odd clouds over Hambantota on December 05 but it isn’t likely to be much of a problem for the batsmen as the pitch has been flat. Batsmen have been able to play their strokes with the pitch behaving well here. Batting first a side would have a target score of 180 or more in mind.
Mahinda Rajapaksa International Stadium, Hambantota’s pitch is batting friendly and the fast outfield makes it a paradise for the batsmen as they can easily play their strokes. It is one of the toughest venues to bowl for the fast bowlers as there is no lateral movement on offer. The slowness of the surface does offer good assistance to the spinners who have done well at this venue.
Batting first seems to be the mantra for the sides winning the toss as the pitch has been a great one to bat on so far in the tournament. The wicket is flat and the side that wins the toss in this game would have no hesitation in batting first in this game and putting up a big score on the board.
Galle Gladiators are under immense pressure as they go into the game. The loss of Afridi has come as a body blow to the side as most of their players haven’t played to their potential so far in the tournament. Viiking on the other hand have seen contributions coming in from all quarters and the side has all its bases covered. This will make them favorites as they go into this contest.
Dambulla Viiking to win