Sri Lanka vs New Zealand 1st ODI Live Streaming, NZ tour of SL
After rain played spoiler in what looked like an easy win for the home side in the sole Twenty20 International on Tuesday night, Sri Lanka take on New Zealand in the first ODI of the five match series at the same venue – Pallekele – on Thursday. Once again, rain is expected throughout the day so one can just hope that the weather gods are kind enough to give us a game. Sri Lanka will look to continue from where they left on Tuesday while New Zealand will hope to find some form with the bat in what could otherwise turn into a disatrous tour.
The Lankan batting lineup is pretty strong and they have the home advantage. Upul Tharanga and Tillakaratne Dilshan will look to provide a quick start even in bowler friendly conditions. Mahela Jayawardene will return to strengthen the middle order. Both Kumar Sangakkara and Dinesh Chandimal take some time initially but are capable of playing exquisite strokes and scoring at a quick pace. Sri Lanka's batting runs deep and hence they will be unaffected by the fall of an early wickets.
The bowlers will receive plenty of assistance from the pitch. They made good use of the conditions on Tuesday and will look to do the same on Thursday as well. Lasith Malinga returns to play the ODI series and this makes the Lankan bowling attack even stronger. However, they may play with an additional spinner now that Malinga returns. Shaminda Eranga may have to sit out so that Rangana Herath or Akila Dananjaya can play. Ajantha Mendis misses out due to injury. Angelo Matthews and Nuwan Kulasekara were brilliant in Pallekele's conditions. They will be expected to be as effective on Thursday too.
The Kiwi batsmen have a lot to worry about ahead of the first ODI. The top order collapsed like a pack of cards on Tuesday. They should not get bogged down due to a couple of quiet overs. Brendon McCullum's innings at the top will be crucial due to his ability to accelerate at will. The middle order is pretty solid with the likes of Ross Taylor, James Franklin and Jacob Oram. The Kiwi batting lineup too runs deep. The return of Martin Guptill at the top will add stability, the tall right-hander has been New Zealand's most consistent performer this season.
The pace attack is pretty strong with the likes of Kyle Mills and Tim Southee capable of taking wickets at the top. Both of them will get plenty of help from the pitch and will be seen swinging the ball quite a bit. Trent Boult can hit the deck hard. New Zealand will miss their most experienced bowler – Daniel Vettori due to injury. They may choose to play Nathan McCullum over Ronnie Hira as McCullum is a better batsman. They have the experienced Oram to bowl his full quota, while Franklin can chip in with a few overs as well. Both medium pacers, should get some swing if conditions stay similar to Tuesday.