Australia vs Sri Lanka, 2nd T20I: Preview - Ruthless Aussies aim series win at The Gabba

Will Sri Lanka turn up for a must-win encounter?

Glenn Maxwell and Lasith Malinga
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Glenn Maxwell and Lasith Malinga. (Photo by BRENTON EDWARDS/AFP via Getty Images)

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Sri Lanka whitewashing Pakistan in their own den seemed to have turned the tide for them in international cricket. Coming to Australia, the visitors hoped to continue the winning momentum. But the Adelaide T20I turned out to be a dampener with Sri Lanka registering its biggest loss ever in T20Is. So will it be another series loss or the fighting spirit in them will finally show up in Brisbane?

Another loss will mean that the familiar scenes repeating for the islanders. The team has witnessed very few highs and a plethora of lows over the last few years. Lasith Malinga has got to lead from the front when it comes to performing with the ball. They just failed to cope with the conditions in Adelaide which resulted in a huge defeat and a better performance is expected from them/

Australia, on the other hand, wouldn’t want to be relaxed and keep performing in order to gain some momentum. David Warner started the home season with a bang while Aaron Finch also got going from the word go. Glenn Maxwell’s changed stance in T20Is worked for him instantly. However, Steve Smith will be eager to bat in this encounter and get a feel of the shortest format to get into the groove.

The Gabba wicket traditionally has bounce in it and the same is expected to be on offer in the second T20 International. The surface is known to be one of the best in the country thanks to its curator and it should be a close contest, unless of course, if Sri Lanka turns up.

Team Combinations

Australia

Mitchell Starc is unavailable for this match as he has been released to attend his brother’s wedding. Either Billy Stanlake or Sean Abbott will replace him in the playing XI. Abbott wasn’t picked originally in the squad. He replaced Andrew Tye who got injured ahead of the first T20I and got ruled out. The rest of the team is expected to be the same with Ashton Turner and Smith waiting for their turn to bat.

Probable XI: Aaron Finch (C), David Warner, Steve Smith, Glenn Maxwell, Ashton Turner, Ashton Turner, Alex Carey (WK), Pat Cummins, Adam Zampa, Kane Richardson, Billy Stanlake/Sean Abbott.

Sri Lanka

Kusal Mendis hasn’t been delivering on the promise for quite a while now and he might be left out. Niroshan Dickwella had an excellent series against New Zealand back home and the left-hander is likely to get a chance to open the innings. Kasun Rajitha registered the worst figures in the T20Is in Adelaide and expect him to be dropped as well. Isuru Udana is likely to come into the XI for him.

Probable XIs: Danushka Gunathilaka, Kusal Mendis/Niroshan Dickwella, Bhanuka Rajapaksa, Kusal Perera (WK), Oshada Fernando, Dasun Shanaka, Isuru Udana, Wanindu Hasaranga, Lakshan Sandakan, Lasith Malinga (C), Nuwan Pradeep.

Focus will be on

Steve Smith (Australia)

Warner’s homecoming after serving the ban was exceptional. But Smith will still be feeling jittery as he didn’t get to bat. No doubt he is the best batsman in the Tests but the same cannot be said about him when it comes to the T20Is. The former Australia skipper will be eager to get into the middle and score some runs for his country in the format. His previous T20I was the first for Australia in more than three years.

Wanindu Hasaranga (Sri Lanka)

Hasaranga was the Man of the Series in the T20I series against Pakistan. But in the first match, he went on to concede 42 runs in three overs. The leggie will have to find different ways to keep the batsmen quiet and it certainly won’t be easy for him in Brisbane. Though he can make use of the bounce in the wicket. It will be interesting to see how Hasaranga bowls on Wednesday.

Head to Head

Matches played – 14 | Australia won – 6 | Sri Lanka – 8 | No Result – 0

Stat Attack

199: 2, 90*, 7, 100* are Warner’s scores against Sri Lanka at home in T20 Internationals.

Broadcast details

TV – Sony Six and Sony Six HD

Live Stream – Sony LIV

Match timings – 6:10 PM Local time; 1:40 PM IST