Sri Lanka look to upset confident England | Daily News

Sri Lanka look to upset confident England

Ben Foakes was the Player of the Series in 2018.
Ben Foakes was the Player of the Series in 2018.

Sri Lanka would look to break the shackles and put an end to England’s dominance when the two teams begin a two-match series of the ICC World Test Championship at the Galle Stadium on Thursday.

The Sri Lankans were humiliated 0-3 by England at home in the three-match series, the last time the two teams figured in a series in November 2018.

Sri Lanka’s task will be even more difficult as they are heading for another tough Test series following a 0-2 drubbing at the hands of South Africa away from home.

In contrast, England are brimming with confidence after their excellent showing during the last few months and they are also in contention to reach the inaugural ICC World Test Championship final after winning their past three series against the West Indies, South Africa and Pakistan respectively.

The Lankans have always had a stronghold at the Galle Stadium but the last time they were at the receiving end as England powered their way to a massive 211-run win with a day to spare.

In fact, skipper Joe Root will look to continue from where they left in 2018 where England went on to clinch the second Test by 57 runs at the Pallekele Stadium and the third Test by 42 runs at the SSC Grounds in Maitland Place.

England, who started the series as underdogs played some outstanding cricket throughout the tour and completely outplayed the Lankans in all departments of the game.

Sri Lanka’s biggest concern will be the injuries to some of their key players as they look to regroup and launch a different challenge to their more confident opponents. In fact, unlike in the previous occasion, this time England are the favourites to pull off the series with some highly talented cricketers vying for a place in the playing XI.

Wicket-keeper batsman, Ben Foakes was the Player-of-the-Series during the 2018 series for his excellent batting where he accumulated 277 runs inclusive of one century and one half-century, at an average of 69.25.

Jonathan Bairstow, Keaton Jennings and Root were the other centurions for England in that successful series.

In contrast, Sri Lanka failed to produce a centurion during that disastrous series and Skipper Dimuth Karunaratne was the highest run-getter with a tally of 256 runs including three half-centuries.