Sri Lanka v New Zealand, 2nd ODI, Hambantota November 11, 2013

Cricket at weather's mercy again

26

Match facts

Tuesday, November 12, 2013
Start time 1430 local (0900 GMT)

Big picture

New Zealand may have mixed feelings about the soggy finish to the first match, but for the hosts, the disappointment of not completing that game is double. With an inexperienced opposition at 13 for 1 chasing a tall score, Sri Lanka will feel they were strong favourites to win the match.

Their plans for developing young players have now been complicated. Chief selector Sanath Jayasuriya had suggested to Sunday Times he would like to rest at least one of the senior batsmen in match two if the first game was won, reasoning, "If they are not at full strength I don't see why we should be at our full strength". With no gains made in the series yet, he will now be tempted to shelve those plans.

The hosts will at least be encouraged by the solidity of their batting. Despite a first-ball jolt and the clatter of wickets after the 35th over, Sri Lanka still managed a fine start and a fast finish. This is in part because this ODI team bats as deep as any Sri Lanka side ever has, but it is also thanks to the enduring class of Kumar Sangakkara and Tillakaratne Dilshan, who appear to be adding new dimensions to their ODI cricket at 36 and 37 respectively. A fluent Sangakkara counterattacked after the early wicket, and an out-of-touch Dilshan dropped anchor, making a valuable contribution nonetheless.

Angelo Mathews' turn as finisher will also reassure the team, after he had become unsteady in that role this year. He is batting ahead of two young batsmen whose cricket is neither well-suited to limited-overs matches nor to the positions they are being forced to bat in, and as such, Mathews will routinely have to pick up the slack until Dinesh Chandimal and Lahiru Thirimanne can become more consistent.

New Zealand, meanwhile, will hope to eliminate the waywardness that characterised their attack on Sunday. Mitchell McClenaghan had bowled excellently in his last outing against Sri Lanka, in Cardiff, but struggled for rhythm and direction in Hambantota, even if he produced the occasional fine delivery. Adam Milne was slightly more disciplined, but was also guilty of releasing the pressure Kyle Mills had built at the other end during the opening overs. Corey Anderson was also expensive, despite dismissing Dilshan in the batting Powerplay.

The cricket, again, is at the mercy of the weather, and the forecast for Tuesday is worse than it was for Sunday.

Form guide

(last five completed matches, most recent first)


Sri Lanka: WWLWW
New Zealand: LLLLW



In the spotlight

Dimuth Karunaratne waited two years for his third ODI, and when it came, he barely had time to breathe in the atmosphere before he was trudging off for a golden duck. He earned his way back into the side largely on the back of a terrific List A series against New Zealand A six weeks ago, when he averaged 90 against an attack that featured Milne, Grant Elliott and Andrew Ellis - all of whom are in this New Zealand squad. He has hit runs all around the world for the A team, but in internationals, he is yet to convince he can be a successful long-term opener. Though his primary focus should be Tests, runs in this series would be an important boon to his confidence ahead of the year-end tour against Pakistan.

Anton Devcich was the latest victim of a Lasith Malinga yorker on Sunday, but before he succumbed with the bat, he had produced perhaps the bowling performance of the innings. His left-arm spin doesn't generate much turn, nor does he seem enamoured with flight, but nagging accuracy helped build pressure through the middle overs, and for that, he was rewarded with two wickets, including that of Sangakkara. New Zealand may look to his bowling again, particularly if the frontline bowlers are struggling to make headway.

Pitch and conditions

The pitch on Sunday did not have as much bounce as Mills hoped for before the match, though it did provide decent movement off the seam. With the rain likely freshening things up, expect a similar surface, as long as the weather will allow the match to happen at all.

Team news

It is difficult to see Sri Lanka change their side, despite three young batsmen's failure in the first match.

Sri Lanka (probable): 1 Tillakaratne Dilshan, 2 Dimuth Karunaratne, 3 Kumar Sangakkara (wk), 4 Mahela Jayawardene, 5 Angelo Mathews (capt), 6 Lahiru Thirimanne, 7 Dinesh Chandimal, 8 Nuwan Kulasekara, 9 Sachithra Senanayake 10 Lasith Malinga, 11 Rangana Herath

James Neesham, who was injured for the first ODI, is expected to be available for selection on Tuesday. McClenaghan may be the man to make way, given his poor outing.

New Zealand (probable): 1 Anton Devcich, 2 Tom Latham, 3 Rob Nicol, 4 Grant Elliott, 5 Colin Munro, 6 Corey Anderson, 7 Luke Ronchi (wk), 8 James Neesham, 9 Nathan McCullum, 10 Kyle Mills (capt) 11 Adam Milne

Stats and trivia

  • Three out of the last four ODIs in Hambantota have been rained out
  • In 19 innings at No. 5, Mathews averages 50.20 at a strike-rate of 93.65 - by far his best stats for any position

Quotes

"If you look at our batting lineup right now, apart from TM Dilshan, Mahela Jayawardene and Kumar Sangakkara, the other four in the top seven are all young cricketers, so there has to be a balance."
Sri Lanka captain Angelo Mathews feels his team is already doing plenty to prepare for the future

"He is one of their key bowlers. If we can deny him as much as possible and look to take on their other bowlers, it is going to give us a good chance."
Tom Latham on Lasith Malinga

Andrew Fidel Fernando is ESPNcricinfo's Sri Lanka correspondent. He tweets here

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Prabhash1985 on November 11, 2013, 10:57 GMT

    We need an Arjuna and Aravinda. That's what lacks in Sri Lanka. 96 world cup winning team was not at all the most skilled team on earth by then, but yet we won the match. We need a strong charismatic, intelligent, FEARLESS leader like Arjuna. And we need a class batsman who can win a match single handed. We don't have Murali. Murali is one of the rarest in the world. We cannot expect a Murali to appear in the team. But we can expect an aggressive, class batsman like Aravinda. By working hard, and by playing in different conditions, people like Thirimanna, Chandimal, Dimuth, Kushal can become an Aravinda. But it is a mental battle. These days, our captains are not as strong as Arjuna used to be.

  • kiwicricketnut on November 12, 2013, 8:26 GMT

    Looks like we might only get half a game in before the rain comes again so hopefully we bat this time, if we score more than 289 then i'll count that as a win anything less than srilankas total i'll consider a loss, the record books though will only ever say no result.

  • on November 12, 2013, 8:23 GMT

    These few days i saw no3 no4 Thirimanna and Chandimal in 99.9% comments . I dont think those are fake comments . Srilanka consists of 99.9% people think that way and other people (0.1%) who is srilankan cricket management.

  • Wolverine77 on November 12, 2013, 7:19 GMT

    Please selectors and Anjy, let Thirimanne bat @ 3. He is a genuine number 3 like the great Asanka Gurusinghe... He has the technique to back him up... He is not a Slogger. He can not hit 6 & 4s at will. Can not clear the boundary like Thisara...Thirimanne is a natural strok player who takes time to score runs quickly... Same with Chandimal. He should bat @ 4... If sanga & Mahela are playing in the team, they need to bat down the order giving this young fellows to shine at the top. Thats how you create a team to win the world cup in 2015!

  • hotcric01 on November 12, 2013, 6:27 GMT

    Dinesh chandimal isn't an ODI batsman in my point of view.He is brilliant for test format.Dimuth is a great talent.Sri lanka's middle order batting is their weakest point.Mathews is the most consistent in middle order batsman but he also is behind when compared to better middle order batsmen in the world likes of AB,dhoni,Bailey.Thirimanne should play at No.04 and Mahela should go down the order as he can play in different gears and also can finish the game well.Upul tharanga is also a better option for no.06.

  • on November 12, 2013, 6:23 GMT

    hi friends, all in vain in the last match, what a good chance we had with lanka making a huge score of 289 and getting a wicket in the early overs, here if the weather allows u the full match , only lanka is going to win, but if the match reduces to 20 or 30 overs just be careful. if nzland bats first just wait for some overs, may be they play good and the rate goes up for lanka, but if lanka plays first be careful again, bc may be they play 16 or more overs and rains comes, and the match reduces to 20 ,,25,,or 30 ovrs, in this scenario nz can win bc they will play full overs after watching the target. so we will have to see the toss first, if lanka wins the toss they will definitely put nz land to bat and if nz , they will put lnka as well.this series can make u win lots of money but its full of tension as well. if full match lanka is going to win at all costs. be careful. those who does hedging , can have one two swings of match so they can do their bets hedged as well.

  • Udendra on November 12, 2013, 4:38 GMT

    They should have scheduled the matches as "Day" matches, knowing that it rains during this time of the year.

  • on November 12, 2013, 3:53 GMT

    while it's true that chandi and thiri can't handle the positions of 6 and 7, I see no reason why Sanga (of the big 3) should have to drop down at all. He's in the form of his life and it's working wonders for both him and the team.

  • on November 12, 2013, 2:41 GMT

    @Advanced_Donkeys, I don't think Sri Lankan cricket has been like that at all. In the 80s Sri Lanka had Somachandra De Silva,Rumesh Ratnayeke, Ravi Ratnayeke and Ashantha De Mel, out ofwhom only rumesh contributed match winning bowling, in the nineties and early 2000s Sri Lankan bowling was dominated by Murali and Vaas. In the last five to ten years, THissara Perera (has 3 ODI five wicket hauls and strike rate of 28), Kulasekara (once ranked no 1. ODI bowler in the world), Rangana Herath ( no.3 in test bowling, top 10 ODI bowling and arguably best left arm spinner in international cricket) and Lasith Malinga have contributed to several if not numerous Sri Lankan wins against Top opposition with their bowling. Ajantha Mendis against non-asian opposition is also a match winner.

  • on November 12, 2013, 2:12 GMT

    Sri Lanka was lucky, in the first ODI courtesy of rain.

  • Prabhash1985 on November 11, 2013, 10:57 GMT

    We need an Arjuna and Aravinda. That's what lacks in Sri Lanka. 96 world cup winning team was not at all the most skilled team on earth by then, but yet we won the match. We need a strong charismatic, intelligent, FEARLESS leader like Arjuna. And we need a class batsman who can win a match single handed. We don't have Murali. Murali is one of the rarest in the world. We cannot expect a Murali to appear in the team. But we can expect an aggressive, class batsman like Aravinda. By working hard, and by playing in different conditions, people like Thirimanna, Chandimal, Dimuth, Kushal can become an Aravinda. But it is a mental battle. These days, our captains are not as strong as Arjuna used to be.

  • kiwicricketnut on November 12, 2013, 8:26 GMT

    Looks like we might only get half a game in before the rain comes again so hopefully we bat this time, if we score more than 289 then i'll count that as a win anything less than srilankas total i'll consider a loss, the record books though will only ever say no result.

  • on November 12, 2013, 8:23 GMT

    These few days i saw no3 no4 Thirimanna and Chandimal in 99.9% comments . I dont think those are fake comments . Srilanka consists of 99.9% people think that way and other people (0.1%) who is srilankan cricket management.

  • Wolverine77 on November 12, 2013, 7:19 GMT

    Please selectors and Anjy, let Thirimanne bat @ 3. He is a genuine number 3 like the great Asanka Gurusinghe... He has the technique to back him up... He is not a Slogger. He can not hit 6 & 4s at will. Can not clear the boundary like Thisara...Thirimanne is a natural strok player who takes time to score runs quickly... Same with Chandimal. He should bat @ 4... If sanga & Mahela are playing in the team, they need to bat down the order giving this young fellows to shine at the top. Thats how you create a team to win the world cup in 2015!

  • hotcric01 on November 12, 2013, 6:27 GMT

    Dinesh chandimal isn't an ODI batsman in my point of view.He is brilliant for test format.Dimuth is a great talent.Sri lanka's middle order batting is their weakest point.Mathews is the most consistent in middle order batsman but he also is behind when compared to better middle order batsmen in the world likes of AB,dhoni,Bailey.Thirimanne should play at No.04 and Mahela should go down the order as he can play in different gears and also can finish the game well.Upul tharanga is also a better option for no.06.

  • on November 12, 2013, 6:23 GMT

    hi friends, all in vain in the last match, what a good chance we had with lanka making a huge score of 289 and getting a wicket in the early overs, here if the weather allows u the full match , only lanka is going to win, but if the match reduces to 20 or 30 overs just be careful. if nzland bats first just wait for some overs, may be they play good and the rate goes up for lanka, but if lanka plays first be careful again, bc may be they play 16 or more overs and rains comes, and the match reduces to 20 ,,25,,or 30 ovrs, in this scenario nz can win bc they will play full overs after watching the target. so we will have to see the toss first, if lanka wins the toss they will definitely put nz land to bat and if nz , they will put lnka as well.this series can make u win lots of money but its full of tension as well. if full match lanka is going to win at all costs. be careful. those who does hedging , can have one two swings of match so they can do their bets hedged as well.

  • Udendra on November 12, 2013, 4:38 GMT

    They should have scheduled the matches as "Day" matches, knowing that it rains during this time of the year.

  • on November 12, 2013, 3:53 GMT

    while it's true that chandi and thiri can't handle the positions of 6 and 7, I see no reason why Sanga (of the big 3) should have to drop down at all. He's in the form of his life and it's working wonders for both him and the team.

  • on November 12, 2013, 2:41 GMT

    @Advanced_Donkeys, I don't think Sri Lankan cricket has been like that at all. In the 80s Sri Lanka had Somachandra De Silva,Rumesh Ratnayeke, Ravi Ratnayeke and Ashantha De Mel, out ofwhom only rumesh contributed match winning bowling, in the nineties and early 2000s Sri Lankan bowling was dominated by Murali and Vaas. In the last five to ten years, THissara Perera (has 3 ODI five wicket hauls and strike rate of 28), Kulasekara (once ranked no 1. ODI bowler in the world), Rangana Herath ( no.3 in test bowling, top 10 ODI bowling and arguably best left arm spinner in international cricket) and Lasith Malinga have contributed to several if not numerous Sri Lankan wins against Top opposition with their bowling. Ajantha Mendis against non-asian opposition is also a match winner.

  • on November 12, 2013, 2:12 GMT

    Sri Lanka was lucky, in the first ODI courtesy of rain.

  • DwightR on November 12, 2013, 1:23 GMT

    this would be a good series to give Ajantha Mendis back in the playing XI as this NZ side has alot of youngsters that have never played him before and he could dominate...also I think Kashual Perera should be opening. This series is a great opportunity to test out the SLC future crop. Sit Sanga, Mahela, Dilshan & Herath and put our brightest future stars out there to the test under the leadership of Angelo & Dinesh. Also it should be noted that this is a terrible series between the combination of a NZ B team & bad weather most likely going to wash out the entire ODI series & it bears no context at all. It would draw more interest as a best of 5 T20 series.

  • Htc-Android on November 11, 2013, 23:15 GMT

    Chandimal and Thirimanne are not finishers. There is no use of playing them at No.6 and 7. Why cant Sanga and Mahela bat down the order and let these youngsters bat at the top. Dont turn them into another Kapugedera. With the amount of experience they have, they can handle any type of situation. Mathews seems to be doing well at No.5. so he should continue batting at that position.

  • on November 11, 2013, 21:40 GMT

    I still cant understand why they dont play Kusal. Secondly Sri lanka has a solid middle order batsmen Kapugedera. He can be the man at No.2 and i dont see Chandimal or thirumanna grow. ok fine. atleast send chandimal and thirumanna at the top to show their talents. Mahela and dilshan should really give youngsters a chance. Sri lanka should try some different things like sending kusal and dimuth to open or kusal and chandimal. i seriously dont understand where our team is heading.

  • IndianCoolGuy on November 11, 2013, 16:48 GMT

    When rain is certain and if SL wins the toss & elects to bat like yesterday for possible 10 or 15 overs of play, Sanga at least now should give chance to the youngsters for God sake.

  • on November 11, 2013, 16:22 GMT

    Thirimanne should bat at no.3 Chandimal at no.4 and Mahela at no.5

  • on November 11, 2013, 16:06 GMT

    This is time period where we need to expect a change, Thirimanna and Chandimal should bat at top order. Unless another ruined future which happened to the Kapugedara. Sanga with the great touch but we need to think about the future as well. This is the time to find the resources to replace those senior slots.

  • stormy16 on November 11, 2013, 15:54 GMT

    Lahiru should bat at 3 followed by Chandimal which will give them a chance to bat without pressure and build with the insurance of Sanga and Mahela yet to come. This is surely how you develop youngsters and not by asking them to bat with a few overs left, under pressure. Also SL need to find a spot for Perera who is surely a potential one day specialist in all three skills. The question on who to drop should be one of the big 3 or Herath.

  • Advanced_Donkeys on November 11, 2013, 14:58 GMT

    1982-2000 was the time period where every SL bowler contributed to win matches..At present it's only Malinga who is doing something.Other bowlers just fill the voids.

  • on November 11, 2013, 14:57 GMT

    As long as SL Mgmt doesn't sort the batting order their would be no impact seen in the coming future ! ! ! Sanga and Dilshan continues to boost their averages and records and 1 fine day They really make no sense !! If they look back their career they could find only records but nothing else such as grooming the young guns!!!!

  • miles100 on November 11, 2013, 13:10 GMT

    2 important points to look at when introducing youngsters for batting - (1)most of the young batsmen must be specialist batsmen who who should be able to do spin bowling or one should be a spare wicket keeper batter like Chandimal or rarely bring specialist batsmen who can bowl effective medium pacy like Mathews and Kallis. But Slow medium pace bowling of Steve Waugh, Tendulkar, Pointing,hussy is not effective in modern day cricket. We need more specialist batsmen who can bowl part time spin/cutter bowling like Aravinda, Sanath, Chris Gayle, Micheal Bevan, Micheal Clarke, Dilshan etc.When selecting youngsters either he is a batsman/wicket keeper or a batsman/part time bowler(not slow medium pacers who does not belong in the modern day cricket). (2) Jayawardene should be at no:5 batting position and Mathews should be at no:6 batting positions. No 7 should go to a young batsman who has the potential to be a future match winning middle order(no 5 or 6) batsman.

  • CrICkeeet on November 11, 2013, 13:01 GMT

    Declair it as a T20 Game! Its the only solution. We cant have 100 overs ODI game, then try a T20....

  • Perera32 on November 11, 2013, 12:30 GMT

    No point even watching because it's definitely going to rain. Such a shame, Sri lanka finally get a chance to play a series after August and it's going to be rained out. Pathetic from the Administrators organizing a series during Monsoon season.

  • on November 11, 2013, 11:52 GMT

    thirimanne should bat at 3, as his only hundred has come in that position, and chandimal should bat at 4 as he averaged close to 40 when he batted there during the start of his career. or make them both openers

  • on November 11, 2013, 11:46 GMT

    thirimanne should bat at no. 3 like he did in australia, and chandimal should bat at no. 4, as he averaged almost 40 when he batted there during the start of his career. or make both of them openers

  • on November 11, 2013, 11:40 GMT

    same result.. wont be more than 20 overs.. I salute our cricket administration officers for your efforts.

  • on November 11, 2013, 11:08 GMT

    That's were the youngsters from SRI LANKA like Chandimal & Thirimanne fail. They are not given a suitable position to bat instead the selectors should replace them with specialist lower order batsmen like Priyanjan, Vithanage or Kapugedara and let them settle in ahead of the World cup. Just look at Mathews stats atm at No. 5, impressive!

  • on November 11, 2013, 11:08 GMT

    That's were the youngsters from SRI LANKA like Chandimal & Thirimanne fail. They are not given a suitable position to bat instead the selectors should replace them with specialist lower order batsmen like Priyanjan, Vithanage or Kapugedara and let them settle in ahead of the World cup. Just look at Mathews stats atm at No. 5, impressive!

  • on November 11, 2013, 11:40 GMT

    same result.. wont be more than 20 overs.. I salute our cricket administration officers for your efforts.

  • on November 11, 2013, 11:46 GMT

    thirimanne should bat at no. 3 like he did in australia, and chandimal should bat at no. 4, as he averaged almost 40 when he batted there during the start of his career. or make both of them openers

  • on November 11, 2013, 11:52 GMT

    thirimanne should bat at 3, as his only hundred has come in that position, and chandimal should bat at 4 as he averaged close to 40 when he batted there during the start of his career. or make them both openers

  • Perera32 on November 11, 2013, 12:30 GMT

    No point even watching because it's definitely going to rain. Such a shame, Sri lanka finally get a chance to play a series after August and it's going to be rained out. Pathetic from the Administrators organizing a series during Monsoon season.

  • CrICkeeet on November 11, 2013, 13:01 GMT

    Declair it as a T20 Game! Its the only solution. We cant have 100 overs ODI game, then try a T20....

  • miles100 on November 11, 2013, 13:10 GMT

    2 important points to look at when introducing youngsters for batting - (1)most of the young batsmen must be specialist batsmen who who should be able to do spin bowling or one should be a spare wicket keeper batter like Chandimal or rarely bring specialist batsmen who can bowl effective medium pacy like Mathews and Kallis. But Slow medium pace bowling of Steve Waugh, Tendulkar, Pointing,hussy is not effective in modern day cricket. We need more specialist batsmen who can bowl part time spin/cutter bowling like Aravinda, Sanath, Chris Gayle, Micheal Bevan, Micheal Clarke, Dilshan etc.When selecting youngsters either he is a batsman/wicket keeper or a batsman/part time bowler(not slow medium pacers who does not belong in the modern day cricket). (2) Jayawardene should be at no:5 batting position and Mathews should be at no:6 batting positions. No 7 should go to a young batsman who has the potential to be a future match winning middle order(no 5 or 6) batsman.

  • on November 11, 2013, 14:57 GMT

    As long as SL Mgmt doesn't sort the batting order their would be no impact seen in the coming future ! ! ! Sanga and Dilshan continues to boost their averages and records and 1 fine day They really make no sense !! If they look back their career they could find only records but nothing else such as grooming the young guns!!!!

  • Advanced_Donkeys on November 11, 2013, 14:58 GMT

    1982-2000 was the time period where every SL bowler contributed to win matches..At present it's only Malinga who is doing something.Other bowlers just fill the voids.

  • stormy16 on November 11, 2013, 15:54 GMT

    Lahiru should bat at 3 followed by Chandimal which will give them a chance to bat without pressure and build with the insurance of Sanga and Mahela yet to come. This is surely how you develop youngsters and not by asking them to bat with a few overs left, under pressure. Also SL need to find a spot for Perera who is surely a potential one day specialist in all three skills. The question on who to drop should be one of the big 3 or Herath.