Both India and Sri Lanka have announced full-strength squads for this series.
Sri Lanka’s last win over India in an ODI series was back in 1997. In fact, they have lost 10 and won just three games since the start of 2017.
India have played just one ODI game at the Barsapara Cricket Stadium in Guwahati which was back in 2018.
India will definitely start the series as favorites. This is despite India’s recent ODI series losses and Sri Lanka’s good returns in the 50-over format. India have not lost an ODI series against Sri Lanka since August 1997; since the start of 2011, Sri Lanka have won just seven games out of 34 in ODI cricket against India. Since the beginning of 2017, the win-loss record is 10-3 in favor of India.
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India: Rohit Sharma (c), Shubman Gill/Ishan Kishan, Virat Kohli, Shreyas Iyer, KL Rahul (wk), Hardik Pandya, Axar Patel, Kuldeep Yadav, Mohammed Shami, Jasprit Bumrah/Umran Malik/Arshdeep Singh, Mohammed Siraj
Sri Lanka: Pathum Nissanka, Kusal Mendis (wk), Avishka Fernando, Dhananjaya de Silva, Charith Asalanka, Dasun Shanaka (c), Wanindu Hasaranga, Dunith Wellalage, Chamika Karunaratne/Dilshan Madushanka, Maheesh Theekshana, Kasun Rajitha
It is the ODI World Cup year. Even though the mega event maybe 10 months away, the preparations for both sides starts now.
There has been a lot of talk about how India need to play their first-choice ODI XI for the majority of 2023. For starters, they do have a near full-strength ODI squad for this series. Barring Ravindra Jadeja, all other players are fit and available for selection.
They’ve lost their last two ODI series against New Zealand and Bangladesh, both away from home but overall, they had a win-loss record of 14-8 in ODI cricket in 2022. Their top order hasn't been at its best. The senior pros Virat Kohli and skipper Rohit Sharma haven't been fluent or consistent in the 50-over format. The likes of Shreyas Iyer, KL Rahul, and Shubman Gill have been in the thick of the runs. Their bowling line-up has been pretty good and the return of Mohammed Shami and Jasprit Bumrah only bolsters the attack.
On the other hand, Sri Lanka are unbeaten in their last four ODI series. They’ve beaten South Africa, Zimbabwe, and Australia while they drew against Afghanistan. Sri Lanka’s bowling has been consistent and the spinners have led the way. The likes of Wanindu Hasaranga and Mahesh Theekshana will pose a big threat to the Indian top-order who have struggled against spin. Their batting though will be tested against a quality Indian attack.
Rohit Sharma is back to lead the ODI squad and Jasprit Bumrah makes a return to competitive cricket for the first time since September 2022. Mohammed Shami is back in the squad as well after missing the Bangladesh series. It’ll be interesting to see if India field both Bumrah straightaway. If he does start, we could see the trio of Bumrah, Shami, and Siraj start in the playing XI. Else, it could be Umran Malik who plays instead of Bumrah.
Another call that India might need to take is between Ishan Kishan who smashed a double ton in the last ODI they played or the consistent Shubman Gill who has got big runs in 2022. Meanwhile, it is also Kuldeep Yadav vs Yuzvendra Chahal for the frontline spinner’s spot.
Sri Lanka may not make too many changes to their ODI XI that faced Afghanistan. Dinesh Chandimal is not a part of the squad and hence, Avishka Fernando may come into the side. Dilshan Madushanka who has been impressive with the new ball in the T20I format may get his ODI cap in this series. Apart from that, their XI looks largely settled.
Shreyas Iyer has been superb in the ODI format. He was India’s leading run-getter in 2022, amassing 724 runs at an average of 55.69 and a strike rate of 91.52. He recorded six fifties and a ton as well and had just one single-digit score in 15 innings. Moreover, his game against spin is top-notch and he will be the key for India at No. 4.
Wanindu Hasaranga has been the pillar of the Sri Lankan sides in white-ball cricket. The leg-spinning all-rounder took 10 wickets in five games at an economy rate of 5.26 in 2022. He batted four times and scored 126 runs at a strike rate of 143.18.
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What: India vs Sri Lanka, Match 3, T20I Series
Where: Barsapara Cricket Stadium, Guwahati
When: January 10, 2023 / 1:30 PM IST
How to watch: Star Sports / Disney+Hotstar (India), Dialog TV and PeoTV (Sri Lanka), ESPN Player (United Kingdom), Fox Sports (Australia), SuperSport (South Africa), Willow TV (USA)
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