India vs Sri Lanka 1st T20 Preview – Betting Tips, Latest Odds, Team News and Predictions – 05/01/2020
Early preparation ahead of this year’s T20 World Cup in Australia starts for India and Sri Lanka this week. They are familiar opposition on the sub-continent and never miss an opportunity to size each other up ahead of future, bigger battles.
This tour will only feature three T20Is, so there are no ODIs and Tests to fall back on. The shortest format will be the be all and end all for this visit – and it’s up to seventh-placed Sri Lanka and fifth-placed India to battle for position in the International Cricket Council’s rankings for T20I teams.
India vs Sri Lanka 1st T20 – Match Preview
Even with Rohit Sharma rested, India are significantly stronger on paper than Sri Lanka, who have had their fair share of struggles on and off the field of late. It’s a fresh start in 2020, though, putting to bed the problems of 2019.
Sri Lanka and India have contested 16 T20s against each other and the Indians have won 11 of those. Sri Lanka have triumphed in only five.
The match will be played at a ground that has only hosted one T20I previously. That was in October 2017, when Australia beat India by eight wickets. India, then, technically have never won a T20 at this stadium, but bettors shouldn’t read too much into that.
Where: Barsapara Cricket Ground, Guwahati
When: Sunday 5 January
Start time: 19:00 (IST) and 13:30 (GMT)
India vs Sri Lanka 1st T20 – Latest Odds
10Cric are offering India at 1.20 to win the first T20, while Sri Lanka are priced at 3.70. The shortest format of the international game can be the most unpredictable and offers the weaker team the greater opportunity to win, as it only requires short periods of sustained pressure on the opposition to succeed.
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India vs Sri Lanka 1st T20 – Team News
While Sharma has been rested, Jasprit Bumrah is back and will likely be put back in the XI for the series opener immediately. His toe-cracking yorkers at great speed are always a threat to even the most composed batsmen.
Young spinner Washington Sundar is a good foil to Bumrah. At just 20 years old, Sundar is impressing many fans and pundits.
Batting-wise, India will look to relative newcomers Shreyas Iyer and Shivam Dube to peform well alongside the experienced Virat Kohli and Shikhar Dhawan.
Sri Lanka, meanwhile, have looped former captain Angelo Mathews back in the mix. He is bowling a lot less than previously, but is still a mighty force with the bat in the middle order.
The tourists will be captained by Lasith Malinga again, who will enjoy the influence and insight offered by Mathews, especially during the all-important first match. Victory in the series opener for Sri Lanka could set a really good precedent for them going forward in the rest of the series and, indeed, against India at the T20 World Cup.
India vs Sri Lanka 1st T20 – Betting Tips
This will be an intriguing battle overall, with plenty of head-to-head battles to look forward to. There is decent balance between bat and ball, which will make for a good contest.
Perera and the promise of 2018
Sri Lanka have only beaten India in T20 cricket once in the last nine attempts. That one time was in March 2018, when Kusal Perera blazed a brisk half-century. He was hardly troubled by spin twins Sundar and Yuzvendra Chahal then, and is tipped to do well against the same bowlers and others this time. Bet365 have Perera priced at 4.50 to be Sri Lanka’s top-scorer in the first T20.
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Bumrah to be back with a bang
Jasprit Bumrah is an excellent T20 bowler because he knows how to vary his lengths, change his pace and bowl according to watch conditions and circumstances dictate. He is a huge asset to India’s bowling attack going into the T20 World Cup. This three-match series, in particular the first T20 in Guwahati, will show what is to come. Bumrah is priced at 3.50 to be India’s top-wicket taker in the first T20.
India vs Sri Lanka 1st T20 – Prediction
India will continue their dominant theme in T20 cricket against Sri Lanka and win a 12th T20 between the two teams. Kohli is still there, even if Sharma is not. Sri Lanka meddle too much with selection, while the Indians rotate talented youngsters around a core of experience. The numbers are too heavily stacked against Sri Lanka for this one.
Best Bet: Jasprit Bumrah to be named Man of the Match at 13.00 with Bet365