England have been clinical in the World Cup so far with the side having a relatively easy schedule. Their only loss came against Pakistan in the 2nd match. Since then, the team has recovered well and put in all-round performances. In their last match, England plundered 397 runs against Afghanistan at Old Trafford, Manchester. Eventually, they won by a huge margin of 150 runs.
On the other hand, Sri Lanka have had an average run in the World Cup so far. They have just won one game while losing 2. Sri Lanka got a couple of points due to abandoned matches against Pakistan and Bangladesh. Considering that not many gave a chance for Sri Lanka before the World Cup began, they have perhaps exceeded expectations. In their last match against Australia, Sri Lanka looked promising while chasing a huge target of 335 but they collapsed badly and lost by 87 runs. During the 15-over mark, skipper Dimuth Karunaratne and Kusal Perera's fireworks ensured that Sri Lanka were 115 for no loss. However, like how it's been throughout the World Cup, none of the other Sri Lankan batsmen stood up and the team folded up for a total of 247.
Given the skill levels of the two teams, England will go into the match as an overwhelming favourite.
So, let's have a look at England's predicted playing 11.
Jonny Bairstow, James Vince
There will be no change at the top of the order since Jason Roy is still on the sidelines nursing a hamstring injury. Jonny Bairstow played a sizeable part in England's fireworks against Afghanistan with a well-made 90. On the other hand, James Vince wasted an opportunity to get a good score as he typically lost his wicket after a good start.
Joe Root, Eoin Morgan, Jos Buttler
Joe Root was another English batsman who had a good day against Afghanistan. He made use off the friendly Old Trafford wicket by scoring a superb 88 off 82 balls. However, the star of the day was skipper Eoin Morgan who struck the ball magnificently right from the word go. Morgan broke a number of records with his 148-run knock. Amidst all this, Buttler surprisingly had an off day.
Ben Stokes, Moeen Ali, Chris Woakes
Ben Stokes also had a failure in England's previous match. Stokes would look to get a good score if he gets to bat against Sri Lanka considering that he hasn't done much after his 89-run knock in the first match against South Africa.
Moeen Ali came back into the playing 11 against Afghanistan and played a stunning cameo at the back end of the inning. He also bowled an economical spell by conceding only 5 runs per over on a flat pitch.
One among the many allrounders in England's team, Chris Woakes has had an average World Cup till now. He has been expensive with the ball while England's gargantuan batting line up has limited his chances with the bat.
Adil Rashid, Jofra Archer, Mark Wood
Adil Rashid put in a respectable performance on an Old Trafford track that didn't provide any purchase for spinners.
Jofra Archer and Mark Wood were as usual at their fiery best. Both the fast bowlers have been competing against each other to be the fastest bowler in the World Cup. But, it's not been just about pace as they have picked a combined 21 scalps till now.
Joe Root- England's No.3 and probably the team's best technician, Joe Root has been in fantastic form in the World Cup. Till now, he has scored 367 runs at an average of 91.75. One could probably say that both Root and England haven't faced their challengers for the trophy until this point. However, it was necessary that all of England's important batsmen were in prime form with the business end of the World Cup not far away. Root is one of England's most important batsmen considering that he is the lone consolidator in a team full of flamboyant batsmen.
Jos Buttler- Nowadays, Jos Buttler is widely regarded as one of the world's best batsmen in limited overs cricket. Since the start of 2017, Buttler has scored 1213 runs at an average of 55.13. His career strike rate of 120.28 puts his impeccable consistency in a different light. Sri Lanka would need to get this big fish early on if they want to have a chance of limiting England to an achievable target.
Jofra Archer- Jofra Archer is only a few weeks old in international cricket but already teams are looking to play him out safely. Yet, his quality is such that he has still been able to be really penetrative. So far, he has picked 12 wickets in 5 games. He has also been miserly which is reflected in the fact that his economy rate is only 4.84. England's bowling now looks more rounded with the combination of Jofra Archer and Mark Wood.
Predicted Playing 11
Jonny Bairstow, James Vince, Joe Root, Eoin Morgan (C), Jos Buttler (WK), Ben Stokes, Moeen Ali, Chris Woakes, Adil Rashid, Jofra Archer, Mark Wood.
Also read – Man of the match world cup 2019Published 21 Jun 2019, 07:30 IST