In the last match, the cricket connoisseurs got to see some nail-biting action for the first time in the series. India would take a lot of positives from that match as they showed the depth of their batting department and so would Sri Lanka, relying on the bowling thaumaturgy of the mystery spinner Akila Dananjaya.
The men in blue will be obviously looking for an unassailable lead in this series by winning this third encounter. Except that landslide happened in the previous match where they lost six wickets for just 22 runs, it has been a cakewalk for the Indian batsmen and that inevitably brings the question whether they would be able to show enough fortitude if fallen under similar dismal circumstances.
As for their bowling department, Jasprit Bumrah has done a resplendent job so far and he is likely to make a similar impact in these matches as well. Left arm spinner Axar Patel and leg spinner Yuzbendra Chahal also had a nice time so far in the middle. As the skipper is aiming to test all of the possible options in his repertoire, Kuldeep Yadav might get a chance in this match. We could also see some changes in the batting order like the previous encounter.
For Sri Lanka, this is a do-or-die encounter to keep themselves alive in the series. For the next two matches, they are going to be captained by Chamara Kapugedera as Tharanga has been suspended yet again due to slow over rate. Although some might deem the decision of making Kapugedera the standby captain inexplicable as he averages around 20 in ODIs, it is the fact that he has been the deputy of this side for the last two matches over veterans like Lasith Malinga.
Whether Sri Lanka would be able to pull off something extraordinary to get their first triumph or whether India would perform the coup de grace to seal the series, we would have to wait a few more hours to know that.
India: 1 Rohit Sharma, 2 Shikhar Dhawan, 3 KL Rahul, 4 Kedar Jadhav, 5 Virat Kohli (capt), 6 MS Dhoni (wk), 7 Hardik Pandya, 8 Axar Patel, 9 Kuldeep Yadav, 10 Bhuvneshwar Kumar, 11 Jasprit Bumrah
Sri Lanka: 1 Niroshan Dickwella (wk), 2 Lahiru Thirimanne, 3 Kusal Mendis, 4 Dinesh Chandimal, 5 Angelo Mathews, 6 Chamara Kapugedera (standby capt), 7 Milinda Siriwardana 8 Akila Dananjaya, 9 Dushmantha Chameera, 10 Lasith Malinga , 11 Vishwa Fernando