Predicted Playing XI | Pitch & Weather Conditions | New Zealand vs Sri Lanka Match Preview:
Matches being called off due to rain, final ball thrillers, major upsets, and on top of everything, great cricket – the T20 World cup so far has seen action-packed and startling clashes. Every team has displayed the essential aptness to play classy cricket. In the 27th fixture of the tournament, New Zealand and Sri Lanka will lock horns with each other at the Sydney Cricket Stadium.
Sri Lanka and New Zealand are two of only three teams in the first group who have a positive NRR currently. As a result both teams are two of top contenders for the semis.
Kiwis have won only one match in the tournament as yet. However, their NRR is 4.450 owing to the mammoth 89 runs win against their Trans-Tasman rivals, Australia, in the opening match. Their next fixture, which was supposed to be played against Afghanistan, was washed out by the rain, thus ending in both teams splitting the points.
The Asian champions had to take a longer route on their way to this position. Playing the group stage matches first, they came out as victors in two games. Although they are occupying the 5th position in the table, their chances of reaching the knockout round are quite strong. This match, however, will be a deciding match for Shanaka-led men. If they end up winning it, they can easily clinch the top position from the black caps and further cement their chances of reaching the next round.
HEAD TO HEAD:
It will be for the first time in 3 years that both teams will encounter each other in T20Is. Both group fellows have competed against each other in 19 T20 matches. With New Zealand winning 10 times and the Islanders superseding them 8 times.
WEATHER AND PITCH REPORT:
Many matches in the tournament have either been influenced or called off all together, because of the rain. This encounter, luckily, will be rescued from having the same fate as the chance of rain in Sydney on Saturday is negligible according to the Bureau of Meteorology. Sun will stay in the sky the whole day with episodic winds as its accomplice.
The pitch of Sydney is a batting pitch. The flat track and quick outfield makes hitting batsmen very easy. However, the boundary size is bigger than many other grounds of Australia. Pacers with new ball can deliver magic here as the pitch provides a decent bounce. Nevertheless, the ball becomes slightly more playable as the match progresses.
One thing which is quite unique about Sydney is the turn it gives to the spinners. Especially, when the pitch is dry, which is expected to be on Sunday as the Sun will not be hampered by any clouds. Spinners during the middle overs can provide important breakthroughs. Finger spinners are to be treasured on a pitch like this. For instance, Mitchell Santner, Ravichandran Ashwin, Axar Patel and Keshav Maharaj – all have been economical at the SCG in the tournament as of yet.
PLAYING XI (PROBABLE):
New Zealand: Finn Allen, Devon Conway (wk), Kane Williamson (c), Glenn Phillips, Mark Chapman, James Neesham, Mitchell Santner, Trent Boult, Lockie Ferguson, Ish Sodhi, Tim Southee.
Sri Lanka: Pathum Nissanka, Kusal Mendis (wk), Dhananjaya de Silva, Bhanuka Rajapaksa, Charith Asalanka, Dasun Shanaka (c), Wanindu Harasanga, Chamika Karunaratne, Asitha Fernando, Mahees Theekshana, Lahiru Kumara.
In the encounter between New Zealand and Sri Lanka, the former team is more likely to come out as champion.Sri Lanka has been terrific during the tournament so far. Their bowling attack, especially the tweakers, is very fine. However, their main concern will be batting. The apex predator of Sri Lankan batting order, Pathum Nissanka, was seen struggling in the previous outing where he scored 40 off 45 balls.
This is where New Zealand’s bowling will try to dominate the Islanders. Their main target will be the top order of Shanaka’s men, as it is known as their Achilles heel. The pacers of New Zealand are deadly with the new ball, it will be a surprise if they don’t capture at least one of the openers in the powerplay.
WHERE TO WATCH:
TV Broadcast: Sky Sports Cricket, Sky Sports Main Event, Sky Sports Mix, Star Sports, Fox Sports 501 & Channel 9 HD, 9GemHD, Sirasa TV, Dialog TV & Event TV.
PTV Sports and A Sports will broadcast the match on television for viewers in Pakistan.
Digital Broadcast: Sky GO, Sky Sports app, Daraz app, AryZap, Tapmad, kiki app.