Defending champions West Indies will be determined to tackle their batting woes and hold their slim semi-final hopes alive when they take on an inexperienced Sri Lanka in the T20 World Cup right here on Thursday. The encounter takes place at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi.
After two back-to-back defeats, West Indies managed to revive their marketing campaign with a scrappy three-run win over Bangladesh.
This is the fourth match that the West Indies will play in this World Cup. This is not an important match for the Sri Lankan team as they have already had to ruled out from the tournament. But this is the decisive match that will determine the future of the The two-time champions’ in this tournament. However , The two-time champions’ not only need to win their remaining two fixtures with massive margins to stay in the semi-final race.
The West Indies bowlers sealed the win against Bangladesh with all-rounders Dwayne Bravo, Jason Holder and Andre Russell bowling brilliantly at the death. The bowling unit has shown they are capable of defending decent totals.
Holder, who was added into the squad as a replacement for Obed McCoy, and debutant Roston Chase turned out to be valuable additions.
While Holder had an immediate impact with the ball (1/22) and the bat (15 off 5), Chase (39) anchored the innings as wickets tumbled at the other end.
The side, known for its flamboyant style of play, has failed miserably with the bat. Had it not been wicketkeeper batter Nicholas Pooran’s quickfire 22-ball 40 they would have lost to Bangladesh as well.
They will need to be better prepared to counter the wily Sri Lankan spin duo of Wanindu Hasaranga and Maheesh Theekshana, who have bamboozled the opposition batters.
West Indies white-ball captain Kieron Pollard suffered a muscle injury to his left thigh in the match against Bangladesh and will be assessed ahead of their crucial T20 World Cup match against Sri Lanka on Thursday. The nature of the injury remained unclear even after vice-captain Nicholas Pooran offered assurances in his post-match comments that the team captain was okay.
“He looks fine; the medical team is still working with him but he should be okay. You can see why he’s a wonderful leader, walking back in to hit that last-ball six. We try to be someone like that in the future,” Pooran said.
West Indies: (probable): Chris Gayle, Evin Lewis, Nicholas Pooran(w), Shimron Hetmyer, Kieron Pollard(c), Andre Russell, Jason Holder, Dwayne Bravo, Roston Chase, Akeal Hosein, Ravi Rampaul
Sri Lanka: (probable): Kusal Perera (w) , Pethum Nissanka, Charith Asalanka, Dananjaya de Silva, Dasun Shanaka (c), Wanindu Hasaranga, Chamika Karunathna, Dushmantha Chameera, Binuna Fernando
Meanwhile, let’s look at important stats and numbers ahead of the 35th game of the T20 World Cup 2021:
The head-to-head record in T20Is can’t differentiate West Indies and Sri Lanka. The two sides have played 14 T20Is against each other and walked away with seven victories apiece. As far as World Cup clashes are concerned, the head-to-head record is 5-2 in Sri Lanka’s favor.
- 51 – Chris Gayle needs 51 runs to become the second batter to complete 1000 runs in T20 World Cups.
- 5 – Kieron Pollard needs five big hits to complete 100 sixes in T20I cricket. He’ll be the third West Indies player to get to the feat after Chris Gayle and Evin Lewis.
- 50 – Andre Fletcher needs 50 runs to complete 1,000 runs in T20Is.
- 47 – Fletcher is also 47 runs away from completing 5,500 runs in T20 cricket.
- 4 – Oshane Thomas is four scalps away from completing 50 wickets in international cricket.
- 1 – Kusal Perera is a big hit shy of completing 100 sixes in T20 cricket.
- 4 – Lahiru Kumara needs four wickets to complete 100 wickets in international cricket.
- 2 – Wanindu Hasaranga (34) is the joint-highest wicket taker in T20Is in 2021. He shares the record with Tabraiz Shamsi.
- 50 – Dinesh Chandimal needs 50 runs to become the seventh Sri Lankan batter to complete 1000 runs in T20 Internationals.
- 4 – Andre Russell has four ducks in T20 World Cups. Only Tillakaratne Dilshan (5) and Shahid Afridi (5) are ahead of him on this unfortunate list.
- 19 – Evin Lewis needs 19 runs to complete 5,500 runs in T20 format.
- 90 – Andre Russell can complete 6,500 runs in this game. He is 90 runs shy of the milestone.