After defeating the two experts’ favourite teams, Afghanistan will come into the game with pride and a desire to achieve more. Sri Lanka also has defeated the world champions which will give some strong confidence. The winner of the game will go into the 7th game week with a hope to qualify, meanwhile, the path for the losing team will become blurry.
Afghanistan is clicking in the fields now. The batters won them the game against Pakistan and the bowlers won the one against England. They seem to be a perfect unit and can upset more teams in the tournament.
Sri Lanka ruthlessly destroyed the defending champions with their pace attack, inclusion of Angelo Mathews seems a boon to them. Top order continues to impress with Pathum Nissanka and Sadeera Samarawickrama easing the chase after a mini collapse.
Afghanistan looked promising with both bat and ball in their previous outing. They have a problem of plenty in the spin attack and a scarcity in the pace attack. Naveen-ul-Haq has been good in the death overs for them but needs support from the other end. Omarzai doesn’t seem to be a great death bowler and leaks run.
Noor Ahmed on his World Cup debut was sensational bagging 3 wickets. Nabi, Mujeeb, and Rashid are doing their jobs well enough. The approach of Rahmat Shah and captain Shahidi was modern-day cricket type, which they need to carry on if they want to humble more big boys in the tournament.
Sri Lanka are clicking at the right time; their bowling and batting are looking promising. Lahiru Kumara was the hero of their win against England bagging 3 wickets. Madushanka has been phenomenal with the new ball and now getting assistance from Kusan Rajitha.
Pathum Nissanka has scored consecutive four-fifties after his first outing going for in the World Cup. Sadeera Samarawickrama has been their MVP in the tournament till now.
Spin bowling remains the concern for Sri Lanka, Maheesh Theekshana has been off-colour in this World Cup and has only 3 scalps to his name, DDS too haven’t stepped up with the bat or ball either.
Probable Playing XI
Afghanistan: Rahmanullah Gurbaz, Ibrahim Zadran, Rahmat Shah, Hashmatullah Shahidi(c), Ikram Alikhil(wk), Mohammad Nabi, Rashid Khan, Mujeeb Ur Rahman, Naveen-ul-Haq, Noor Ahmed, Fazalhaq Farooqi.
To strengthen the pace attack Fazalhaq Farooqi could come in XI in place of Azmatullah Omarzai.
Sri Lanka: Kusal Perera, Pathum Nissanka, Kusal Mendis(c) (wk), Sadeera Samarawickrama, Charith Asalanka, Angelo Mathews, Dushan Hemantha, Maheesh Theekshana, Lahiru Kumara, Kasun Rajitha, Dilshan Madushanka.
With DDS’s poor run with bat and ball and Sri Lanka spin bowling worries, he could make way for Dushan Hemantha or Dunith Wellalage.
Pune’s Pitch is always known for its unexpected nature, but it’s been flat for the past few years. The pitch as usual will be black soil, a bit flat with an average score of around 300-310. Square boundaries are shorter as compared to the straight and front squares. The only match that happened here truly showcased the healthy batting nature of the pitch, with no help for the bowlers.
Players To Watch Out For
When Sadeera Samarawickrama first came to India in 2017, he was considered to be a wicketkeeper, not a batter and got out for cheap scores, but Sadeera in his redemption arc has come back in India and has made a statement in the world cricket. Being the top scorer of Sri Lanka, Sadeera has scored 295 runs including one century and 2 half centuries. He has been the best player of spin in the middle overs for Sri Lanka.
Pune ground and Kasun Rajitha has a separate love story. In 2016, Rajitha made his T20i debut on this ground and took apart the Indian top order by bagging 3 wickets in the first spell. 7 years later, he came back to the same stadium and did the same by rattling the Indian top order. He has found his rhythm in this World Cup by grabbing 7 wickets to his game in just 3 matches. With Pune’s ground being Rajitha’s area of dominance, Sri Lanka would be hoping for him to give his level best.
Rashid Khan has been Afghanistan’s go-through bowler for the past few years and with the batting skills he possesses, he can be a sole match-winner for the Afghani team. Rashid has been below average in this World Cup edition by both bat and ball, averaging 37 with the ball and taking only 6 wickets in 5 matches, With the bat he has a strike rate of 88.89 which is very poor for a finisher. Rashid Khan would love to redeem himself with both ball and bat and Afghanistan would also be hoping the same.
AFG vs SL Dream11 Team for Match 30 of 2023 WC
Note: This is not our final Dream11 Team as we are not aware of the Toss Result/Final Playing XI of both teams at this moment.
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