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Sri Lanka eye consolatory win against rampant India
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Sri Lanka eye consolatory win against rampant India

Sri Lanka's underwhelming World Cup campaign will finish with a clash against the dominant Indian side on Saturday at Headingley Carnegie.

Except for a surprise win against tournament hosts England, Sri Lanka's World Cup has been a stuttering journey which has constantly strived for maintaining some balance in the side.

Batting deficiencies have been a routine occurrence for Dimuth Karunaratne's men, who have failed to apply themselves at the crease for longer periods of time and often failing to bat out the full quota of 50 overs.

Attacking starts have been a norm for Sri Lanka, but that has been followed up with middle order collapses wounding the progress of the side.

With nothing on the line for the island nation, Sri Lanka will be vying hard to give a memorable send-off to some of their senior cricketers Lasith Malinga and Angelo Mathews, who might be appearing for the last time in a World Cup.

India have not put a foot wrong during their tournament, cruising to victories over top sides with ease barring the one hiccup against hosts England.

India's rejuvenated bowling attack has been at the helm of their wins with the top order batters Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli churning out emphatic knocks to punish oppositions.

They would be keen on ending the league stage with a win despite having already qualified for the semi-finals, though the team management might want to tinker with the playing XI to bridge the minor loopholes in the line-up.

Avishka Fernando's classy batting displays

Sri Lanka's World Cup campaign has experienced a late surge primarily due to the valiant efforts of young batsman Avishka Fernando.

The 21-year-old recently hit his maiden World Cup century against the West Indies and has added much-needed stability to his side's top order ever since he was inducted into the side.

Possessing a natural ability to hook the ball tremendously well, Fernando already looks a class apart from his fellow teammates.

India's rickety middle order

Although India's batting has always been rated highly by experts, they face a dearth of stabilizing forces in the fragile middle order.

MS Dhoni's waning prowess with the bat and Hardik Pandya's volatile form does little to substantiate India's batting line-up.

Having tried different batsmen in various positions already in the tournament, India would be looking to secure a set combination before they play the semi-final.


India: Virat Kohli (c), Jasprit Bumrah, Yuzvendra Chahal, MS Dhoni (wk), Ravindra Jadeja, Kedar Jadhav, Dinesh Karthik, Hardik Pandya, Rishabh Pant, KL Rahul, Mohammed Shami, Mayank Agarwal, Rohit Sharma, Kuldeep Yadav

Sri Lanka: Dimuth Karunaratne (c), Avishka Fernando, Suranga Lakmal, Lasith Malinga, Angelo Mathews, Jeevan Mendis, Kusal Mendis, Kusal Perera, Thisara Perera, Dhananjaya de Silva, Milinda Siriwardana, Lahiru Thirimanne, Isuru Udana, Jaffrey Vandersay, Kasun Ranjitha