England’s bowlers powered them to a series win against Sri Lanka with one match still to go.
Expect England to win the 3rd T20I.
As was expected, England beat Sri Lanka comprehensively in the 2nd T20I at Cardiff and have taken an unassailable 2-0 lead in the series with one match still remaining. Sri Lanka was poor once again with the bat and have looked quite ordinary so far. With the series already won England would now be targeting a 3-0 clean sweep and given the form they are in, they certainly are well on their way to achieve that goal in the final T20I at Southampton.
In the second T20I, England restricted Sri Lanka to 111-7 in their 20 overs on a wicket that was doing something for the bowlers. With the target being reduced 103 runs in 18 overs due to rain, England reached their comfortably in 16.1 overs with 5 wickets to spare.
The wicket wasn’t easy to bat on and at one stage, England had been reduced to 36-4 with the top-order suffering a minor collapse. However, Sam Billings (24 off 29 balls) and Liam Livingstone (29* off 26 balls) ensured there were no more hiccups. England had rested Jos Buttler for this game and brought in Billings, a move that paid rich dividends. It also shows the depth in their batting which already has the likes of Jason Roy, Jonny Bairstow, Dawid Malan, and Eoin Morgan.
England have also been clinical with their bowling. Mark Wood continues to impress with his pace and lengths and spinner Adil Rashid has been economical and among the wickets. Sam Curran, David Willey, and Chris Jordan have all impressed as well and help form a potent bowling unit.
Jason Roy, Jos Buttler (wk), Dawid Malan, Jonny Bairstow, Eoin Morgan (c), Moeen Ali, Tom Curran, Chris Jordan, Chris Woakes, Adil Rashid, Mark Wood
Chris Jordan, Jonny Bairstow, Sam Billings, AU Rashid, Moeen Ali, Liam Livingstone, Eoin Morgan, Sam Curran, David Jonathan Willey, CR Woakes, Dawid Malan
Sri Lanka have their task cut out this series. Two batting failures in a row doesn’t bode well on them and the batsmen really need to step up. In the last match, it was only Kusal Mendis (39 off 39 balls) and captain Kusal Perera (21 off 25 balls) that saved them the blushes. The others like Danushka Gunathilaka, Avishka Fernando, Niroshan Dickwella, and Dasun Shanaka, would need to start contributing as well.
Sri Lanka’s bowling has been much better. At one stage in the last game, they had England under real pressure. Dushmantha Chameera and Binura Fernando were impressive at the start. And Isuru Udana’s spell of 1-25 in 4 overs showed why he is such a reliable seamer for the Lankans. Leg-spinner Wanindu Hasaranga (2-20) was the pick of the bowlers again and had kept things tight from his end. However, the team would be disappointed with the performance of off-spinner Akila Dananjaya who lacked bite and went wicketless again.
Danushka Gunathilaka, Avishka Fernando, Kusal Perera (c), Kusal Mendis, Niroshan Dickwella (wk), Dasun Shanaka, Wanindu Hasaranga, Isuru Udana, Akila Dananjaya, Dushmantha Chameera, Binura Fernando
Niroshan Dickwella, Isuru Udana, Binura Fernando, Kusal Perera, Lakshan Sandakan, Dasun Shanaka, Kusal Mendis, Dushmantha Chameera, Danushka Gunathilaka, Wanidu Hasaranga, Oshada Fernando
|Hr||Temp||Rain||W. speed||W. direction||Clouds|
|00h||11||0 mm.||1.48 k/h||From: WNW||11%|
|03h||11||0 mm.||0.55 k/h||From: N||9%|
|06h||12||0 mm.||0.66 k/h||From: E||6%|
|09h||16||0 mm.||2.79 k/h||From: ESE||45%|
|12h||17||0 mm.||3.81 k/h||From: SE||73%|
|15h||18||0 mm.||2.92 k/h||From: ESE||100%|
|18h||18||0 mm.||3.07 k/h||From: E||100%|
|21h||15||0 mm.||3.1 k/h||From: ENE||96%|
The pitch at the Rose Bowl in Southampton is generally a good one for batting. It does offer good pace for the seamers early on, but once the surface settles down, it gets pretty good for batting.
A couple of showers are expected in Southampton on the day of the match but we should still get a full game.
The average first innings total at the Rose Bowl in Southampton in T20s is 167 and it drops down to 150 in the second innings. The highest team total in T20Is on this venue is a massive 248-6 by Australia against England in 2013.
The team winning the toss is likely to bat second in this match.
England have now won all the last five games they have played against Sri Lanka and it's very likely that their winning streak will continue. England have amazing batting depth and can win from any situation. Their bowling looks really strong too, particularly in these conditions. Sri Lanka has been very poor with the bat and unless they pull off something special, they are staring at a 0-3 whitewash in this series after the end of the final T20I.
Expect England to win the 3rd T20I.