The first Test between Sri Lanka and Bangladesh will start at the Pallekele International Cricket Stadium on Wednesday.
Cricket is back in Sri Lanka after a couple of months, with Dimuth Karunaratne and co. looking to mark the occasion with a successful performance in the upcoming series. They haven't done well since mid-2020, losing series against South Africa and England. However, Sri Lanka will take confidence from their showing against the West Indies last month. Although they could only manage to draw the series, the emergence of Pathum Nissanka will serve as a big boost. With Angelo Mathews also returning to the fore, Sri Lanka will fancy their chances against Bangladesh.
However, they face a stern test in the form of Bangladesh, who are certainly a force to be reckoned with in this format. Although they are missing some key personnel in Shakib Al Hasan and Mustafizur Rahman, Bangladesh can still rely on the experience of Tamim Iqbal, who will be key to their fortunes with the bat. With Mominul Haque set to lead a rather well-balanced side, Bangladesh might even be eyeing a surprise win, given their recent record in subcontinent conditions.
Although Sri Lanka might hold the advantage owing to home conditions, they will certainly not take Mominul and co. lightly. With both teams looking to land the first blow in this series, we should be in for an entertaining game of Test cricket in Pallekele.
Squads to choose from
Dimuth Karunaratne (c), Niroshan Dickwella, Dinesh Chandimal, Oshada Fernando, Pathum Nissanka, Roshen Silva, Angelo Mathews, Dhananjaya de Silva, Dasun Shanaka, Wanindu Hasaranga, Ramesh Mendis, Suranga Lakmal, Lahiru Kumara, Vishwa Fernando, Dilshan Madushanka, Praveen Jayawickrama and Asitha Fernando
Mominul Haque (c), Liton Das, Mohammad Mithun, Mushfiqur Rahim, Tamim Khan, Shadman Islam, Abu Jayed, Taskin Ahmed, Taijul Islam, Najmul Hossain Shanto, Mehidy Hasan Miraz, Nayeem Hasan, Ebadot Hossain, Mohammad Hasan, Yasir Ali, Shoriful Islam, Khaled Ahmed, Mukidul Islam, Shuvagata Hom, Shahidul Islam and Nurul Hasan
Predicted Playing XIs
Dimuth Karunaratne (c), Lahiru Thirimanne, Dinesh Chandimal, Angelo Mathews, Pathum Nissanka, Niroshan Dickwella (wk), Dhananjaya de Silva, Suranga Lakmal, Wanindu Hasaranga, Vishwa Fernando and Lahiru Kumara
Tamim Iqbal, Saif Hassan, Mominul Haque (c), Mushfiqur Rahim, Mohammad Mithun, Liton Das (wk), Mehidy Hasan, Nayeem Hasan, Taijul Islam, Taskin Ahmed and Ebadot Hossain
Match: Sri Lanka vs Bangladesh, 1st Test
Date: 21st April 2021, at 10:00 AM IST
Venue: Pallekele International Cricket Stadium, Pallekele
Although the pitch in Pallekele is a good one to bat on, the bowlers should get some help off the surface as the Test progresses. While the new-ball bowlers should be able to extract some swing in the early stages, the spinners will play a huge part, with ample turn on offer. Batters will need to bide their time in the middle before going on the offensive. Both teams will look to bat first upon winning the toss, with the side batting last likely to have a hard time against the spinners in Pallekele.
Sri Lanka vs Bangladesh 1st Test Dream11 Fantasy Suggestions
Fantasy Suggestion #1: Liton Das, Dimuth Karunaratne, Mushfiqur Rahim, Pathum Nissanka, Tamim Iqbal, Dhananjaya de Silva, Mehidy Hasan, Wanindu Hasaranga, Suranga Lakmal, Taijul Islam and Taskin Ahmed
Captain: Dimuth Karunaratne. Vice-captain: Mushfiqur Rahim
Fantasy Suggestion #2: Dinesh Chandimal, Dimuth Karunaratne, Mominul Haque, Pathum Nissanka, Tamim Iqbal, Dhananjaya de Silva, Mehidy Hasan, Wanindu Hasaranga, Suranga Lakmal, Taijul Islam and Taskin Ahmed
Captain: Wanindu Hasaranga. Vice-Captain: Tamim Iqbal