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Tuesday, 14 February 2012

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No reason why India cannot be beaten:

Lankans have it in them to win and move on

The Sri Lankan cricketers, after their excellent performance in Perth where they had the Australians hoping like kangaroos to stave off defeat, will take inspiration from that effort when they play the Indians here at the Adelaide Oval today in a Commonwealth Bank series game under lights.

It was just bad luck that Sri Lanka lost to India and Australia in Perth. Had luck looked kindly on them, the Lankans would have taken the field in Adelaide all smiles.

But with India beating Australia, the Lankans are placed in a situation where they will have to get back to winning ways if they hope to keep their chances alive of figuring in the best of three finals.

Up against it

A loss to India, and the Lankans will be up against it. From now on Sri Lanka will have to dare and call the shots and not leave anything to chance.

This game is a must win game. The selectors when picking the playing eleven, will have to front up the best men who could turn tables on the Indians, who must now be licking their lips after their grand win over Australia.

The Adelaide Oval looks a picture with the St. Peter’s Cathedral overlooking it. Today’s game will be played on the same strip on which the India-Australia thriller was played.

According to selector on tour Asantha de Mel, the playing eleven will be picked after a look at the wicket. ‘It looked slow during the India- Australia game and we will be looking at going in with two spinners. But that is only an option”, he said.

Under pressure

Sri Lanka must fire from the first ball. If they could put the Indians under pressure from the first ball, then when the final ball is delivered, victory could be their’s.

Openers Tillakratne Dilshan Upul Tharanga, Kumar Sangakkara, Dinesh Chandimal, Mahela Jayawardena and Lahiru Thirimanne must make big scores. Tharanga and Thirimanne have not made any contributions of significance.

Dilshan, Jayawardena, the captain and Kumar Sangakkara must set an example to their team mates by making big scores. A lot depends on them to set the Indians an imposing total.

Stay at the wicket

Jayawardena must stay at the wicket and not take any risks till he gets to 30 to 40 runs. He is too good to keep failing and a big score is due from him. This could be the game he has been waiting for to unwind. He must cut out the risky strokes early on.

As for the bowling Lasith Malinga has not been bowling at his best. He has not been able to direct his threatening Yorkers as he usually does. If he does it right in this game,chances of winning will be there.

Nuwan Kulasekera has always been a trier. He bowls long spells and endeavors to bowl wicket to wicket which is the right thing to do in this style of game.

Dhammika Prasad is showing glimpses of turning out into being an all rounder if the manner in which he defied the Aussie bowers with Angelo Mathews is an indication.

Bowled beautifully

Mathews seems to have got over his injuries that have stalled his progress, especially in bowling. He bowled beautifully in the game against Australia and must do similarly in this game too.

The Lankan think tanks will do well to promote Mathews up the order when chasing a target. To bat him in him usual position and the ask him to unleash,will be to put undue pressure on his natural stroke play.

India will be a tough nut to crack now that they have got into the winning street. But if the Lankans believe in themselves and play true to form, should come out winners and take it from there and move to the finals.

Adelaide, Monday

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