Lanka Premier League 2nd semi-final, Dambulla Viiking vs Jaffna Stallions: Who will win today’s LPL 2020 match?

Angelo Perera holds the jey for Dambulla Viiking
Angelo Perera holds the jey for Dambulla Viiking

Dambulla Viiking and Jaffna Stallions have taken contrasting paths to the LPL 2020 semi-final. Dambulla Viiking were inconsistent early on but hit their stride towards the second half of the league stages.

With the Jaffna Stallions, it has been the reverse. They took the LPL 2020 by storm and won each of their first four matches. It's been a sorry story after that with three losses and one no result.

In their last league encounter, Dambulla Viiking went down to Colombo Kings by six wickets despite posting 203 on the board. As for Jaffna Stallions, they too faced Colombo Kings in their previous match but faltered in a chase of 174.

Form Guide: Dambulla Viiking

Although Dambulla Viiking go into the semi-final having lost to Colombo Kings, it shouldn’t shatter their confidence much. They would be happy with their batting performance.

Dasun Shanaka is the third-highest run scorer of the LPL. He has 273 runs to his name at a strike rate of 164. Niroshan Dickwella and Angelo Perera have slammed two fifties at strike rates in excess of 140. The experienced Upul Tharanga has only one fifty to his name, but you never know what he comes up with.

In the bowling department, their spin trio has done an excellent job. Samit Patel, Malinda Pushpakumara, and Ramesh Mendis have stalled the opposition on more than one occasion. Anwar Ali though, went for 56 in his last match, so that will concern Dambulla Viiking.

Form Guide: Jaffna Stallions

Wanindu Hasaranga will play an important role for the Jaffna Stallions
Wanindu Hasaranga will play an important role for the Jaffna Stallions

Had it been a tournament with bigger teams, Jaffna Stallions might not have made it to the semi-final.

When they won their initial games, there was a pattern to the Jaffna Stallions’ winning. The top order would fail, then Thisara Perera would change the game with his mighty hitting. The momentum shift would work in the bowlers’ favour, and Perera himself would be among the wickets.

Once the teams figured out Jaffna Stallions’ modus operandi though, they have been caught napping. Perera has failed with the bat in the last few games, even as the top and middle order has continued to struggle. Both Johnson Charles and Tom Moores have done little of note at the top.

In the bowling department, Wanindu Hasaranga has stood out. He is the leading wicket-taker in the LPL 2020, with 13 wickets at a strike rate of 13.3 and an excellent economy of 5.48. Usman Shinwari has bowled with pace while Suranga Lakmal has also made an impression.

Dambulla Viiking vs Jaffna Stallions: Match prediction

On current form, Dambulla Viiking hold the edge. They've found multiple match-winners over the course of the tournament. These players will have to put up their hands up again for the Viiking to sail through to the final.

For the Jaffna Stallions, this is the right time to end their losing streak. It will be tough considering their weak batting. But they only need to look as far as Galle Gladiators for inspiration.

Predicted to win: Dambulla Viiking

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Edited by Vishal Kataria
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