4 exciting ODI series to look forward to in 2018
With the 2019 ICC Cricket World Cup just ten months away, each ODI series involving the ten competing nations will be crucial. These teams will be trying to test their bench strength, figure out the best possible XI, and improve the standard of the game.
The 2011 winners, India, and the 2015 champions, Australia, have a lot to ponder after their recent series defeat against England. With the World Cup to be hosted by England and Wales next year, this does not augur well for the former champions.
Also, bottom-placed teams like Sri Lanka and Afghanistan will be trying to improve their game and gain momentum in the run-up to the showpiece event. Let us now look at four exciting ODI tournaments to watch out for in 2018.
1) Sri Lanka vs South Africa: 5 ODIs (July 29- August 12)
Sri Lanka defeated the mighty South Africans 2-0 in the recently concluded two-match Test series played at Galle and Colombo, convincingly. With the five-day games done and dusted, the focus now shifts to the white ball matches to be played at Dambulla, Pallekele, and Colombo from July 29.
Though the rankings favor Proteas (3rd in the ICC ODI rankings), Sri Lanka (8th) hold the upper hand in the five-match series given the home conditions and their winning momentum.
With Jean-Paul Duminy, David Miller and Andile Phehlukwayo returning to the limited-overs squad, it will be a major boost for the South Africans who will encounter a balanced Lankan squad in their own backyard. It will be a daunting task for Du Plessis and his men to defeat the Lankans at home, for which they need to be at their very best in all departments.