Will England win again in Kandy?

Expect Another England Triumph Over Sri Lanka

England claimed victory over Sri Lanka via the Duckworth/Lewis method in the second one-day international of their series at Dambulla.

For the second match on the bounce, the Three Lions were inserted by the home side. Jason Roy lost his wicket in the first over, while Jonny Bairstow had issues finding his rhythm at the crease before falling for 26.

Joe Root and Eoin Morgan excelled at the crease, with both players notching half-centuries to build the foundation for the England innings. The duo both passed fifty, although neither were able to push on to three figures with the Three Lions captain falling eight runs short of a ton.

England’s innings did peter out as they tail collapsed amid a fine spell of bowling from Lasith Malinga, who claimed a five-wicket haul. Sri Lanka were set 279 runs to win the contest, although Chris Woakes and Olly Stone made the early inroads to put the home side behind the run rate.

Woakes’ three wickets proved to be crucial as Dhananjaya de Silva and Thisara Perera led a rally with the bat, although it was not enough to get their side back up to pace before rain ended the contest, with the tourists edging their way to a 31-run win by the D/L method.

The Three Lions can ensure they maintain their unbeaten record in series since 2015 with a win in Kandy, although they will be without Liam Dawson, who has returned home due to a side strain.

Will England win again in Kandy?

Sri Lanka’s Top Batsman

The home side cannot afford to see their top order blown away like it was in the contest in Dambulla. Niroshan Dickwella, Upul Thuranga and Chandimal were all dismissed for single figures, leaving the rest of the line-up with a huge mountain to climb to get back into the contest. Woakes and Stone’s guile and pace proved to be too much for them to handle. The damage done in the early stages of their reply allowed England to canter to a comfortable victory without getting a contribution from their spinners.

Sri Lanka need at least one of their top three batsmen to fire this series to keep pace with the runs scored by the visitors. Dickwella has the ability to strike the ball to all parts of the ground and there will be pressure on him to respond to his disappointing outing. The 25-year-old notched a couple of decent scores against South Africa. However, he has not proven himself against a quality attack by scoring three figures other than against Zimbabwe last year. Back him to lead the way for the Lions at odds of +400   with Bet365.

England’s Top Batsman

The England openers failed to get going for the second game in a row. Roy was undone by a loose shot in the first over, while Bairstow was struggling for timing at the crease before he eventually was out for 26 to Perera. Root maintained his excellent form in the 50-over format, notching another half-century, although he would have been disappointed to miss out on a hundred give his touch at the crease. Morgan had to battle his way to get past thirty, but from that point onwards he found his rhythm and played brilliantly for his innings of 92.

The England captain has been under pressure for his place in the team, although his form has been fairly consistent throughout his career. His leadership has been outstanding, once again proving his importance to the success of the team. Batting at number four, the 31-year-old will continue to have opportunities at the crease. Morgan is a good player of spin and will be vital to his side’s success in the series. Back him to lead the way once again with the bat at odds of +450   with Bet365.

Sri Lanka’s Top Bowler

All the attention before the series was on Sri Lanka’s spin bowlers to provide the impetus with the ball to disrupt England’s batting power. However, it was the pace of Malinga that brought the home side into contention, taking his first five-wicket haul since 2014. At the peak of his powers Malinga was almost unplayable at the end of the innings due to the quality of his yorkers. The 35-year-old lost his form for a period of time, which saw him dropped from the 50-over side for over a year.

He was recalled for the Asia Cup and found his best to take four wickets against Bangladesh for the cost of just 23 runs. That appears to have provided the spark to get the paceman back in rhythm. Malinga accounted for the dismissal of Roy in the first over before returning to remove Morgan and the lower to limit England’s ability to hit out in the latter stages. Malinga will be the key going forward as he can effect both the start and the end of the visitors’ innings where they can pile up the runs.  Back the 35-year-old to lead the wicket column at odds of +275   with Bet365.

England’s Top Bowler

Woakes missed the majority of the summer due to injury, but was on point with a fine spell of opening bowling to put England in control. The 29-year-old has been underwhelming outside of England, especially in the longer form of the game. However, he proved what an asset he can be with his opening burst, removing Thuranga, Chandimal and Dasun Shanaka. Woakes is averaging nearly thirty with the ball and has taken at least one wicket in his last 11 one-day matches.

England will look to him to hand them the initiative along with Stone at the top of the innings. Morgan will be desperate for Woakes to continue his level of threat, probing outside of off stump. Stone brings the pace that England have been crying out for to tear through opposing line-ups. It alleviates the pressure on Adil Rashid and Moeen Ali in the middle of the innings to strike. Back Stone to follow his promising debut display, where he took one wicket for 23 runs, at odds of +400   with Bet365.

Match Verdict

England were not at their best in the second match of the innings, but still managed to close out a routine victory via the D/L method. Once their batsmen find their rhythm they should be able to post 300 plus run scores to put the home side under pressure. Sri Lanka do not have enough talent in their batting unit to match that level of production. Back the Three Lions to notch their second win of the series in Kandy at odds of -275   with 888Sport.

Tips Summary

England To Beat Sri Lanka
Wednesday 17th October 2018 10:00 BST
Odds: -275

Niroshan Dickwella To Be Sri Lanka’s Top Batsman
Wednesday 17th October 2018 10:00 BST
Odds: +400

Lasith Malinga To Be Sri Lanka’s Top Bowler
Wednesday 17th October 2018 10:00 BST
Odds: +275

Eoin Morgan To Be England’s Top Batsman
Wednesday 17th October 2018 10:00 BST
Odds: +450

Olly Stone To Be England’s Top Bowler
Wednesday 17th October 2018 10:00 BST
Odds: +400

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