"They have got a phenomenal bowling attack" - Aakash Chopra on Sri Lanka heading into 2024 T20 World Cup clash vs South Africa

Australia v Sri Lanka - T20 Series: Game 1
Wanindu Hasaranga is expected to lead the Sri Lankan bowling attack.

Aakash Chopra reckons Sri Lanka possess a 'phenomenal' bowling attack heading into their 2024 T20 World Cup opener against South Africa in New York on Monday, June 3. He expects a riveting contest between the Lankan Lions' bowling and the Proteas' batting.

Sri Lanka and South Africa are placed in Group D alongside Bangladesh, Nepal and the Netherlands. Most experts term it the 'Group of Death', and the loser of Monday's game will have a tough road ahead to make it to the Super Eights.

In a video shared on his YouTube channel, Chopra noted that Sri Lanka have a formidable attack that can take advantage of the bowler-friendly conditions in New York.

"The Sri Lankan team is very competent. Their bowling attack is outstanding - Wanindu Hasaranga, Maheesh Theekshana and Matheesha Pathirana. Then Angelo Mathews is bowling well and they have Dushmantha Chameera, Dilshan Madushanka and Nuwan Thushara," he said (9:10).
"They have got a phenomenal bowling attack. Considering the pitch that was seen in the first match, the friendly between India and Bangladesh, I feel their bowling will do well," the former India opener added.

Wanindu Hasaranga, Matheesha Pathirana and Dilshan Madushanka have been bothered by injuries lately. Sri Lanka will hope that the trio are fully fit for the global event.

"They could have slight problems in batting" - Aakash Chopra on Sri Lanka

Kusal Mendis and Pathum Nissanka will potentially open the batting for Sri Lanka.
Kusal Mendis and Pathum Nissanka will potentially open the batting for Sri Lanka.

On the flip side, Aakash Chopra was slightly concerned about Sri Lanka's batting.

"They could have slight problems in batting - Kusal Mendis, Pathum Nissanka, and Charith Asalanka - how they will play? Then Dhananjaya de Silva, they will again expect batting from Angelo Mathews, and Dasun Shanaka. The batting is looking 50-50 but their bowling is looking good to me," he said (9:30).

The renowned commentator chose Pathum Nissanka, Angelo Mathews, Wanindu Hasaranga and Matheesha Pathirana as the players in focus for the 2014 T20 World Cup champions.

"Sri Lanka's bowling and South Africa's batting will be the contest to watch out for. Players in focus - Pathum Nissanka because the ball will swing, Angelo Mathews who is doing well as an all-rounder, and then Wanindu Hasaranga/Pathirana. It will be very interesting to see how they perform," Chopra stated.

Sri Lanka had mixed results in their two warm-up games, losing to the Netherlands by 20 runs before beating Ireland by 41 runs. Their batting didn't fire in either game, with Hasaranga's 39 being the top score across the two matches.

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Edited by Sai Krishna
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