5 Players to watch out for in the India-Sri Lanka ODI series

5 Players to watch out for in the India-Sri Lanka ODI series

The players who will attract a lot of attention and scrutiny around their performance.

Virat Kohli and MS Dhoni India
Indian cricket captain Virat Kohli walks with his teammate Mahendra Singh Dhoni. (Photo by LAKRUWAN WANNIARACHCHI/AFP/Getty Images)

After a disastrous Test series, all Sri Lanka can hope for is a miracle to turn things around in the ODI series against India, which commences this Sunday. Indians have been merciless on their neighbours and annihilated them 3-0 in the Test series, which made them only the second team in the history to whitewash the Islanders in their home.

It will be a different ball game in the limited overs, but Sri Lankan cricket right now is having problems in every format. They have some decent talents in the side but they just don’t seem like a competent unit which can challenge the best in the business. How can they change the current scenario is a conundrum for a commoner, but the board has to think deeply to get better results.

Without a shadow of a doubt, this ODI series will be thoroughly entertaining considering the number of showstoppers who will appear on the battlefield on Sunday. As the series inches closer, let’s take a look at five players who really are going to make a difference and pull the attention towards them.

1. MS Dhoni

The living legend of Indian cricket, MS Dhoni will be hogging the limelight this series for a lot of reasons. Considering a fact that even his place in the side is in danger, the 36-year-old has a lot at stake and he will be under certain pressure. Dhoni has a great record against the Lankan lions and he will be looking to gather some crucial runs this series. It’ll be interesting to see how he reacts to this predicament and the fans would be hoping for some fireworks from his side.

2. Shikhar Dhawan

“The Gabbar” of Indian cricket, Shikhar Dhawan has been in amazing form over the last few months. The southpaw will be looking to add some more crucial runs to his tally considering there’s a lot of competition currently for the opening slot. He will be accompanied by his partner in crime Rohit Sharma and since both these players have been in great nick, a spectacle is definitely on cards.

3. Dimuth Karunaratne

One of the very few positives for Sri Lanka from the Test series was Dimuth Karunaratne’s batting form. The left-handed batter spanked a sensational hundred in the second Test at Colombo and will be a pivotal cog in the Lankan unit. Karunaratne has the ability to switch roles from an anchor to an aggressor and this versatile nature will only help in the time to come. If he can play some good knocks, the Islanders will definitely be in contention to win the series.

4. Lahiru Kumara

Touted as the future of Lankan fast bowling, Lahiru Kumara has everything in his arsenal for a young quick bowler. He is blessed with raw pace and inexhaustible energy, but the 20-year-old still has to work a lot on the channels he should be bowling. It will be a difficult task to contain the Indian batters who are in such great form currently, but he has all the ability in the world to pick wickets and keep Sri Lanka in the hunt.

5. Hardik Pandya

Since his entry into the elite level, Hardik Pandya has managed to make the most of every opportunity he got. One of the best all-rounders in the world currently, Pandya is already a star in the unit and has the backing of the skipper and management to go all out with the bat. That trust has helped him express himself and he has been entertaining one and all with his skilful batting. With the ball, he has been picking crucial wickets as well, providing an extra bowling option to the skipper.