Both teams are coming in this game with a fair bit of momentum and in many ways, this is an evenly matched affair.
But if we are to pick a winner, we would have to go with the Lankans in our Sri Lanka vs Bangladesh betting tips and predictions. They have a slightly superior squad and are coming off a fantastic run.
Sri Lanka won all three of their matches in Group A to top the table with 6 points. Even though those matches were against the likes of Namibia, Ireland, and the Netherlands, the boys got a lot of practice done and look ready to rumble.
Against the Dutch, they were particularly impressive – Sri Lanka ran riot and bowled out the Dutch side for just 44. Wanindu Hasaranga and Lahiru Kumara took three wickets each.
In fact, such has been the strength of their bowling. It is quite versatile and carries plenty of depth – much similar to Bangladesh. Maheesh Theekshana has also proven his mettle on numerous occasions and is currently the leading wicket-taker for them in the tournament with 8 wickets in the three played.
It is with the bat where their problem lies. The three games so far in the UAE have seen someone or the other step up in situations when other batters have succumbed to cheap wickets, particularly their openers. What is needed from them is a collective batting effort.
As for their overall T20 experience this year, they have played some big teams like West Indies, India, England, and South Africa but could manage a series win only against their Northern neighbours.
After losing their opening Group game to Scotland in the T20 World Cup, Bangladesh bounced back with resounding wins over Oman and Papua New Guinea. While the win over P.N.G was an easy one, the one against Oman could have very well gone either way.
The Tigers were bowled out for 153 and just when it looked like the hosts would stage a comeback, a few wickets in quick succession sealed the deal.
With the ball, they have been absolutely phenomenal. Mustafizur Rahman and Shakib Al Hasan have been wreaking havoc, making life difficult for the opposing batsmen. The duo are boasting 15 wickets between them already, with Mahedi Hasan also joining the party with five wickets to his name.
The issue may lie in the lack of consistency in the batting department. Al Hasan has singlehandedly guided the inning forward with some assistance from the likes of Mohammad Mahmudullah and Mohammad Naim. But their skipper will sleep better knowing that their other batters are in form too.
Bangladesh can also seek solace from the fact that they defeated Australia and New Zealand each in a five-match T20I series at home as part of their World Cup preparations.
Bangladesh’s Likely XI
Liton Das, Mohammad Naim, Shakib Al Hasan, Mushfiqur Rahim, Mahmudullah, Afif Hossain, Nurul Hasan, Mahedi Hasan, Mohammad Saifuddin, Nasum Ahmed, Mustafizur Rahman
Venue & conditions
We are in Sharjah for this one where the conditions have proven to be precarious for batting but exceptional for bowling. We may be looking at another low-scoring affair here and considering the bowling strength of the two sides, the match will likely come down to who bats better.
A first-inning score upwards of 140 should be competitive enough.
In all fairness, Bangladesh have got just as good a chance to win this one as Sri Lanka. They have a more reliable middle order and highly experienced batting lineup when compared to the Lankans.
However, let’s not forget that Sri Lanka have a tendency to perform at the big stage. Their pedigree in World Cups – be it 50-over or 20-over – is considerably more impressive than their current opponents. Plus, they did beat Bangladesh in the warm-up some 11 days ago although, that result hardly accounts for anything here.
We are in store for a solid game of cricket where Sri Lanka will start as the favourite.
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