India vs Sri Lanka, 3rd T20I: Match Prediction – Weather Report, Pitch Conditions, Playing XIs and Live Streaming Details
Virat Kohli and Co. lock horns with Sri Lanka in the third and final T20I of the series at the Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium in Pune.
Updated - Jan 9, 2020 4:58 pm
The Men in Blue, who had a phenomenal run throughout 2019, are touted to continue their stupendous form this year too. After the first T20I was washed out due to rain, India hit the right notes in the second T20I to decimate Sri Lanka and start the 2020 campaign on a winning note. With an objective to cement their squad ahead of T20 World Cup 2020, Virat Kohli and Co. lock horns with Sri Lanka in the third and final T20I of the series at the Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium in Pune.
Having won nine of their last 10 T20I against Sri Lanka, India are undoubtedly the favourites to clinch this encounter and the series. In the second T20I, the pace trio- Navdeep Saini, Shardul Thakur and Jasprit Bumrah dismantled the visitors’ batting line-up as they posted 142 runs on the board. Apart from the solitary batting effort from Kusal Perera (34), no other Sri Lankan batsman was able to stay at the wicket for a prolonged period.
A brawny batting force- which has been India’s forte since a few years- pounced on the Lankan lions yet again. KL Rahul (45) and Shikhar Dhawan (32) propelled India to a good start in initial overs with Shreyas Iyer (34) and skipper Virat Kohli (30) eventually finishing the job for the hosts. The Men in Blue chased down the target in just 17.3 overs- something that was on the cards considering the depth in Indian batting arsenal.
Virat Kohli and his troops will be eager to flaunt a similar batting performance in the third T20I too. However, Pune has been a bit favourable to visitors. The only time India lost to Sri Lanka in the last 10 encounters was in Pune in 2017. Lasith Malinga and his troops will be also willing to level the series before they lock horns with England in a two-match Test series in March.
Pitch and Conditions
The team winning the toss is expected to bowl first as the wicket will assist the seam bowlers. Both the sides are equipped with quality fast bowlers. It’s expected to be a perfect day for a game of cricket. There is no chance of rain whatsoever with the temperature expected to hover around 23-25 Degrees Celsius according to AccuWeather.
KL Rahul and Shikhar Dhawan will be steering India’s batting force. The duo has been successful to bolster India’s top-order in Rohit Sharma’s absence. Shreyas Iyer, who has emerged as a perfect candidate for the No.4 slot, will be eager to deliver another impressive performance alongside skipper Virat Kohli.
Navdeep Saini also hogged the headlines in the previous match by his blistering pace. He will be partnering with spearhead Bumrah and recent entrant Shardul Thakur. Yuzvendra Chahal has been overlooked by the team management since the last five matches and with India’s rotational policy of wrist spinners, Chahal is expected to have a go in place of Kuldeep Yadav.
Predicted XI: Shikhar Dhawan, KL Rahul, Virat Kohli (C), Shreyas Iyer, Rishabh Pant (WK), Shivam Dube, Washington Sundar, Shardul Thakur, Kuldeep Yadav/Yuzvendra Chahal, Navdeep Saini, Jasprit Bumrah.
Bench: Manish Pandey, Sanju Samson, Kuldeep Yadav/Yuzvendra Chahal, Ravindra Jadeja
All eyes will be on Sri Lanka’s skipper Lasith Malinga failed to shine in the second T20I. Wanindu Hasaranga was the pick of the bowlers as he scalped three wickets while conceding 30 runs in his spell. The top-order trio of Gunathilaka, Fernando and Perera will be steering Sri Lanka’s batting attack.
Bhanuka Rajapaksa, who has delivered impressive performances in T20 leagues recently, is also anticipated to play a vital knock for his national side. However, Sri Lanka will miss the services of Isuru Udana. Udana has been ruled out of the match after he hurt his back while fielding in the second T20I.
Predicted XI: Danushka Gunathilaka, Avishka Fernando, Kusal Perera (WK), Angelo Mathews/Oshada Fernando, Bhanuka Rajapaksa, Dasun Shanaka, Dhananjaya de Silva, Wanindu Hasaranga, Kasun Rajitha, Lasith Malinga (C), Lahiru Kumara.
Bench: Lakshan Sandakan, Angelo Mathews/Oshada Fernando, Niroshan Dickwella, Kusal Mendis
Probable Top Performers
Virat Kohli– India | Bhanuka Rajapaksa- Sri Lanka
TV – Star Sports 1, Star Sports 1 HD
Match Timings – 19:00 IST, and 13:30 GMT.
The prediction is for India to win the match and clinch the series.