- Australia has a superior bowling attack in comparison to Sri Lanka
- Glenn Maxwell and Billy Stanlake have been standout performers for Australia in the T20 format in the past 12 months
- Sri Lanka has a lot of inexperienced players in their lineup. Kusal Mendis, Kusal Perera and Lasith Malinga are the only experienced players for this series
Host Australia will be looking to get off to a good start when they face Sri Lanka in the opening game of the T20I series at Adelaide Oval on Sunday. Given the T20 World Cup will be staged in Australia next year, the selection committee has announced a full-strength squad for Australia for this series. Aaron Finch will be hoping that the side can start their home season on a winning note. The return of Steven Smith, Pat Cummins and Mitchell Starc will certainly strengthen the batting and bowling resources for Australia for this T20I series.
On the other hand, Sri Lanka Captain Lasith Malinga will be hoping that the side can continue their winning momentum in the T20 format. After completing a whitewash over Pakistan in three-match T20I series, Islanders will be confident of doing well in this series.
Aaron Finch-led unit will be looking to start their home season on a winning note. For this T20I series, the return of David Warner will certainly bolster the batting resources for Australia. Earlier this year, Australia managed to complete a clean sweep over India in a two-match T20I series played in India.
In the batting department, the side will be heavily reliant on experienced trio of Aaron Finch, David Warner and Steven Smith to produce the bulk of the runs. The captain, Aaron Finch, will be looking to make amends for his poor record in the T20 format. In the last 12 months, Finch only scored 75 runs in 10 outings at an average of 7.50.
Bowling wise, the side will be relying on the experience of Mitchell Starc and Billy Stanlake to make early inroads with the new-ball. Left-arm orthodox spinner Ashton Agar and leg-spinner Adam Zampa will other bowling options for Australia.
Sri Lanka will be looking to continue their winning momentum in this three-match series. The inclusion of Kusal Perera, Kusal Mendis, and Niroshan Dickwella will certainly bolster the batting resources for the side for this series.
Looking at the batting, the visitors will be depending on the experienced trio of opener Danushka Gunathilaka, wicketkeeper-batsman Kusal Perera and Kusal Mendis to do the bulk of scoring, whereas in-form Dasun Shanaka will be expected to produce big runs at the back end of the innings. In the previous T20I series against Pakistan, debutant Bhanuka Rajapaksa performed exceedingly well and will be looking to continue his rich vein of form with the bat in this series. All-rounders like Dasun Shanaka and Isuru Udana have the capability to produce big runs in the later stage of the innings.
In the bowling department, the focus will be on the likes of Nuwan Pradeep, Lasith Malinga and Isuru Udana to make crucial breakthroughs. Leg-spinner Wanindu Hasaranga will be looking to continue his good form with the ball.
The side that wins the toss would be looking to bat first and put a competitive score on the board. Chasing might be tricky as surface tends to provide more assistance to the spinners.
PITCH REPORT AND WEATHER CONDITIONS
Traditionally, the pitch prepared for the game will be excellent for batting. Spinners will certainly get some assistance from this surface. Average score at Adelaide Oval is around 150 to 160 runs. The weather conditions are expected to be sunny with light winds.
After analyzing both squads we believe Australia are clear favorites to win this game against Sri Lanka as they are playing in their home conditions. The return of Steven Smith, David Warner and Mitchell Starc will certainly strengthen the overall squad. Sri Lanka will need to adjust to the conditions in order to get something out of this game.
Expect Australia to register a comfortable win over Sri Lanka.