After beating South Africa 2-1 to register crucial World Cup Super League points, Sri Lanka are now at the business end. After getting the better of a Covid-ravaged India 2-1, this is another opportunity for Dasun Shanaka’s men to secure their second consecutive T20I series win. This is highly possible because of South Africa’s massive downward spiral and arbitrary team selections over the last couple of years.
The likes of Wanindu Hasaranga, Dushmantha Chameera, Charith Asalanka and Avishka Fernando have provided a glimpse of a brighter future but sustaining the momentum is the key. A series win will give them some confidence going into the T20 World Cup where they will not have direct access.
Head to Head
Overall 13 | Sri Lanka 5 Wins | South Africa 8 Wins
Last Five Matches | Sri Lanka 2 Wins | South Africa 2 Wins | No Result 1
Colombo’s R Premadasa Stadium has hosted 39 T20I matches where batters have scored at a run rate of 7.7. Even though recent trends suggest otherwise, pacers have been the most dominant entity with a share of 55.2% of total wickets. However, spinners have a better average and economy with 21.4 and 6.8 respectively as compared to 25.2 and 8.1. Since 2019, spinners have had a bigger wicket share with 54.1% which roughly translates to 3.3 wickets per game. The average 1st innings score at the venue in the last three years is 141 with 133 being the highest score ever chased.
While you could go for the above team, you also have the option of choosing your own team from Cricket.com’s Fantasy Research Centre. You can use this tool to build your team with the help of algorithms. Based on your preferences, the platform will guide you to create the ideal fantasy XI.
Quinton de Kock is the real asset for the South African side and one of the consistent batting forces. His return for the Sri Lanka series is a huge shot in the arm for the side that is vying to get back on track. Since January 2019, de Kock averages 40.61 at a strike rate of 151.7 in T20Is which includes as many as seven fifty-plus scores in 19 innings. He has to be your captain.
Our Criclytics Player Projections predict de Kock to score 28-42 runs
Wanindu Hasaranga is a revelation for the Sri Lanka side, be it with the bat or ball. There is only once in the last 10 matches that Hasaranga has gone wicketless and has contributed decently with the bat. He will have to have a massive impact if Sri Lanka fancy a chance to beat the Saffers.
Our Criclytics Player Projections predict Hasaranga to score 6-10 runs and pick 2-3 wickets
Tabraiz Shamsi’s evolution is a story of the year in South Africa cricket. Always ready to flight it up, the left-arm unorthodox spinner is the N0.1 T20I bowler in the world, having taken 24 wickets this year at 12.20. He has a fantastic economy of 5.32, which means his strike rate is very good at 13.20. He can be a terrific addition to your fantasy team.
Our Criclytics Player Projections predict Shamsi to pick 2-3 wickets
Here are the top-11 picks as per Criclytics projected points –
Sri Lanka: Kusal Perera, Avishka Fernando, Kamindu Mendis, Dhananjaya de Silva, Charith Asalanka, Dasun Shanaka (c), Wanindu Hasaranga, Chamika Karunaratne, Dushmantha Chameera, Praveen Jayawickrama, Maheesh Theekshana.
South Africa: Quinton de Kock, Aiden Markram, Reeza Hendricks, Rassie van der Dussen, David Miller, Dwaine Pretorius, Keshav Maharaj, Kagiso Rabada, Bjorn Fortuin, Sisanda Magala/Anrich Nortje, Tabraiz Shamsi.