West Indies tri-series 2013: West Indies eye win against Sri Lanka to enter final
Time – 9.30 a.m (7.00 p.m IST), July 7
The route for West Indies to earn a place in the final is simple. They will have to win the next match against Sri Lanka without any trouble.
If West Indies wins against Sri Lanka, then the team which has maximum number of bonus points will play the final against West Indies. On the other hand, if Sri Lanka wins, it would make things tougher for India.
West Indies are heavily reliant on the top order to deliver the goods under pressure situations. Chris Gayle, Samuels, Pollard and Dwayne Bravo have been the consistent performers for the home team. Charles also played a brilliant innings against India and Bravo would be hoping that he can replicate the same performance against Sri Lanka.
They also have Darren Sammy lower down the order, who has the ability to change the course of the match within an over. However, these batsmen haven’t performed while chasing a big score.
An ideal example would be the match against India where their top-order failed to make substantial contribution. Also, West Indies almost made a mess of chasing a small total against India in the second match of the tri-series. So, if they can show some patience, then West Indies would certainly have their noses ahead.
The sad news for the West Indies is that Bravo is out of the squad and therefore Pollard is likely to lead the side. Pollard should marshal his resources effectively as West Indies death bowling was exposed against India. They leaked 97 runs in the last nine overs.
Sri Lanka, on the other hand, have performed well in the tri-series. Their batsmen were instrumental in Sri Lanka clinching the win against India. However, they do not have quality batsmen in the middle-order and West Indies captain Bravo would be looking to exploit that weak point of Sri Lanka. So, Sri Lanka middle order needs to score the runs consistently to ably support the top three
Pitch and Conditions
The wicket in Port of Spain behaves unevenly. So, toss will play a critical role. Both teams would prefer to bowl first.
Bravo is likely to miss the match against West Indies. So, Devon Smith will replace Dwayne Bravo.
Sri Lanka, on the other hand, will like to stick with the same combination that outclassed India.
Watch out for:
West Indies top order: West Indies have quality batsmen at the top of the order. But they haven’t set the base for the lower order batsmen to exploit in the final overs. Therefore, the top order needs to get into the groove to shield the middle order.
Upul Tharanga: He has proven to be a great opener for Sri Lanka. He has provided Sri Lanka steady starts and needs to keep that going. If he can put up another good show, then Sri Lanka would fancy their chances.
“We’ve got to try and regroup as a batting group and try and figure out where we went wrong. We have a quick turnaround, the next game on Sunday is very important against the Sri Lankans and we can’t afford to make the same mistake again.”- Captain Bravo wants their batsmen to fire.