Daijiworld Media Network
Colombo, Jul 23: Hello, and a warm welcome to one and all to the 2nd ODI between South Africa and Sri Lanka. The hosts crushed the visitors by a massive margin of 180 runs, the second biggest loss for South Africa in terms of runs. Kumar Sangakkara recorded his highest ODI score, a superb hand of 169. AB de Villiers stated that he would like to forget the first match and comeback strongly in the rest of the series.
There was some rain in the morning. However, it has stopped now and we might have a prompt start. The bad news though is that more rain is predicted later on in the afternoon. Well, the news coming out is that the toss has been delayed though.
Sri Lanka have won the toss and elected to bat
South Africa (Playing XI): Hashim Amla, Alviro Petersen, Jean-Paul Duminy, AB de Villiers(w/c), Faf du Plessis, David Miller, Robin Peterson, Ryan McLaren, Chris Morris, Morne Morkel, Aaron Phangiso
Sri Lanka (Playing XI): Upul Tharanga, Tillakaratne Dilshan, Mahela Jayawardene, Kumar Sangakkara(w), Lahiru Thirimanne, Thisara Perera, Dinesh Chandimal(c), Jehan Mubarak, Rangana Herath, Shaminda Eranga, Lasith Malinga
One change for the visitors. Hashim Amla is back in place of Colin Ingram. The hosts remain unchanged.
Match preview :
South Africa would look to bounce back after their 180-run defeat against Sri Lanka in the opening game when the two teams clash again in Colombo on Tuesday. With Hashim Amla almost declared fit to play the second match, the Proteas would draw some positives even after a humiliating defeat.
Team News All is well with this Sri Lankan team, at least at home. After being knocked out of the Champions Trophy by India in the semi-final, they went down to the same opponents again in a heart-breaking final in the Tri-Series in the West Indies. However, back in the Emerald Isles, they seem to have found some rhythm back again. They annihilated a listless South African unit, who were no match for the hosts as Kumar Sangakkara blazed away to a magnificent 169. Sri Lanka, even without regular skipper and key allrounder, Angelo Mathews, playing under Dinesh Chandimal looked organised. Their batting, with the return of Dilshan at the top, looks even more sound.
Sri Lanka also score over the Proteas in the bowling department. With the likes of Malinga, Eranga, Herath and Perera, the Islanders have a strong attack and that was evident in the way the dismissed the visitors for a paltry 140. Coach Graham Ford wants his wards to be more consistent and that is something they would seek again on Tuesday at the Premadasa Stadium in Colombo for the second ODI.
Key Players Sangakkara was sensational in the first ODI, notching up a career best score while Jaywardene has been in good touch too. Dilshan will be expected to unleash some fireworks after his return to the side and he is never too far away from a dream run. Herath, the left-arm spinner has been a delight to watch and he will once again be the trump card for Sri Lanka against a South African unit, which struggles so badly against the turning ball.
Team News The good news first. Hashim Amla and Lonwabo Tsotsobe are almost certain to play after regaining fitness. The duo missed out on the first game and Amla's absence in particular, was felt at the top of the order. Tsotsobe's return to the side will boost the bowling attack and allow More Morkel more support at the other end, something he clearly missed on Saturday. Nothing went right for South Africa in the opening game but skipper AB de Villiers is not willing to look back - he instead wants his team to focus on the future and do all it takes to win a cricket game.
The Proteas have been severely paralised by the absence of some key players but they still have enough firepower in their ranks - the captain himself, Duminy, du Plessis, Miller and Morkel can all pack a punch and they would just need to click as a unit.
Key Players The classy de Villiers will have to lead from the front. He is their best player and if he gets runs, the rest would want to follow his example. Morne Morkel got enough purchase from a wicket that had little help for his breed and he would once again be expected to lead a largely inexperienced attack.