World Twenty20 2014 April 2, 2014

Dhaka pitch a fresh challenge for SL, SA

Mirpur will provide more grip and turn for the spinners than the surface in Chittagong, which held together through most of the Super 10 stage. South Africa and Sri Lanka, therefore, will need to adapt quickly
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As South Africa and Sri Lanka tread back to Dhaka for the final stages of the World T20, a lot of the focus will be on how quickly these two teams adjust to the surface at the Shere Bangla National Stadium. They have been presented with a perceptibly different set of conditions in Chittagong, which were challenging in their own right but didn't resemble those in Dhaka all that closely.

Both sides will play evening matches, which means they may have to contend with a bit of dew, but they can only guess the extent. What they can be sure of is that the surface will be dry and will become drier as the three hours progress. The pitches in Mirpur have been kind to spinners, affording them the luxury of considerable turn and some bounce.

By contrast, the surface at the Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium was faster than expected, with little turn for the spinners. The brown clay differs from the soil used in Mirpur, where the clay constituent is black, and it keeps its character better throughout the day; during the evening, the behaviour of black clay can be quite changeable, as seen in how much the scores and results varied between the 3.30 pm and 7.30 pm starts.

In Chittagong, leaving on a layer of grass helped retain a little extra moisture and further protection from drying came from a hessian cover used during the main part of the day. There were up to seven pitches on the square, with two main ones rotated for the fixtures at ZACS. Dew was a problem in some of the evening games, and it was unclear whether use of an anti-dew spray had any effect.

Rain also whips in off the sea without much notice, in Chittagong. As summer arrives and temperatures rise - the extra heat and humidity are indicators of rain - brief storms, such as the one that curtailed the game between England and New Zealand, are fairly common. This also played some part in keeping the pitch fresh. The grass ensured the ball skidded on, generally aiding run-scoring.

From a local point of view, it was confusing to see how the Chittagong pitch behaved. It has traditionally been a bastion of batting, and is a favourite of many Bangladeshi batsmen looking for a quick fix in their form. The Bangladesh team have often stated privately, and publicly at times, that the Chittagong pitches make them feel more at home, particularly in Test cricket. Recently, they drew Tests against New Zealand and Sri Lanka there, and their comfort level was quite evident.

Sri Lanka and South Africa can still expect runs in Dhaka, though. There haven't been too many low-scoring games here, apart from Afghanistan getting blown away for 72 or Australia's 86 all out against India. There were ten 150-plus scores with Pakistan making 191 and 190 against Australia and Bangladesh. Five teams have won chasing in ten games, twice in the last over. But teams that have won batting first have mostly won by big margins - 16, 73, 50, 73 and 84 runs.

Three of the top five wicket-takers in Mirpur have been spinners - Amit Mishra, R Ashwin and Samuel Badree - and that was along expected lines. Umar Gul and Al-Amin Hossain were the seamers with most wickets, but that was more due to their variations and diligence than the pitch.

Teams batting second have made faster starts and hit more sixes (16 as opposed to 8) in powerplays than while batting first.

At the start of the Super 10 group stage, New Zealand captain Brendon McCullum perfectly summed up the difference between the two venues.

"In this set-up [Chittagong], I don't anticipate spin will play a great role from the point of seeing the ball turn and bounce past the bat," he said. "Good spinners still manage to play a vital role in T20 cricket but it just won't be quite the same role that we'll see up the road in Dhaka."

Only on the last day of competition at the Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury did the pitch begin slow and offer turn, as New Zealand finally lost out to the conditions. The absence of dew, possibly due to a spray used on the outfield, gave Sri Lanka the advantage, according to stand-in captain Lasith Malinga, and may have helped prepare them for the Dhaka leg of the competition.

"We were worried about the dew factor but fortunately for us there was no dew on that day and it worked to our advantage because the spinners managed to get a grip on the ball and take wickets," Malinga said.

When asked about the difference between the two venues, early in the tournament, Sri Lanka's regular captain Dinesh Chandimal had a succinct response. "We are looking forward to Dhaka."

Alan Gardner is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. He tweets here
Mohammad Isam is ESPNcricinfo's Bangladesh correspondent. He tweets here

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • DVSK on April 3, 2014, 11:37 GMT

    @Jagger Did you actually not watch the Asia Cup? Sri Lankan won not Pakistan.

  • on April 3, 2014, 7:23 GMT

    This T20WC has been awesome, and I hope to see two exciting semi's before the finalists clash on Sunday. Best of luck to SA, SL, WI and Ind. I don't like cricket, I LOVE it. - SA fan

  • pmaulik on April 3, 2014, 5:55 GMT

    As a Indian fan, I would prefer SA against IND in the semis. There are some reasons - 1. SA are not in that form right now winning very narrowly in their previous games. 2. SA are the most vulnerable team against spin right now in the semis. 3. They have not faced Amit Mishra some times in recent past.That gives IND an edge. 4. IND has been playing in Bangladesh for last 40-45 days. 5. Players like Yuvraj , Kohli and Raina like SA attack. 6. IND has the advantage of knowing the pitch. So eagerly awaiting for the semis and best of luck india for the final.

  • Jagger on April 3, 2014, 3:09 GMT

    South Africa can consider themselves lucky they had the better of the pitches and opposition in the lead up. Australia had to play the Asia Cup winner on the same pitch for their first game, the title holders for the second, and the tournament favourites for the third!

    One would hope the ICC could get their act together and schedule their tournaments to a location and time where dew-fall does not decide the winner.

  • on April 2, 2014, 20:09 GMT

    From now on Dew factor is not the only one to be counted, you can count the " LUCK FACTOR" also, specially since is 20 over game . Good luck any of the 4 teams .

  • PROPHESIER on April 2, 2014, 19:39 GMT

    @ LakshithaR, Dont be under false impression that SL dominated india during mid 90's to mid 2000's and don't miseducate ur fellow srilankan fans. You are misinformed abt Srilanka dominated India during mid 90's to mid 2000's.Where do you have these stats? Go check cricinfo statsguru. Srilanka had dominated india only during 1996-98/99 period. In this period Srilanka won 11 and lost 6 times to india (11-6, this called domination). If u look at 1996-2006 they are pretty much equal Sri-20 Ind-19. During 2000-2010 India won 29 and Srilanka won 21. I don't need to tell u stats in the last 3-4 years coz, I'm sure u r aware of the story. So the fact is Srilanka dominated India only for 2-3 year period. Get ur facts right.

  • Cool_Joy on April 2, 2014, 18:45 GMT

    Though I am a SL fan, I like both SL and WI. Looking forward to a good contest. Go Lanka Go!!!

    Cheers from Canada.

  • ProdigyA on April 2, 2014, 17:31 GMT

    Gayle went for a duck in the last match against Pak. Im sure thats not going to happen again. I have a feeling he is going to be the man of the match tomorrow or at least play an important part in helping WI win against SL.

    So SL better watch out for Gayle.

  • bhriguaneja on April 2, 2014, 16:35 GMT

    I don't know whats the point of these games. Every one here seems to know who will win or get to the finals. I just want to see good cricket. It doesn't matter who wins.

  • kaluwa on April 2, 2014, 15:53 GMT

    Chndimal? Will he joing again as a captain? Crszzzzzzy. Might be turning point the match. Even he is not suitable for ODI.

  • DVSK on April 3, 2014, 11:37 GMT

    @Jagger Did you actually not watch the Asia Cup? Sri Lankan won not Pakistan.

  • on April 3, 2014, 7:23 GMT

    This T20WC has been awesome, and I hope to see two exciting semi's before the finalists clash on Sunday. Best of luck to SA, SL, WI and Ind. I don't like cricket, I LOVE it. - SA fan

  • pmaulik on April 3, 2014, 5:55 GMT

    As a Indian fan, I would prefer SA against IND in the semis. There are some reasons - 1. SA are not in that form right now winning very narrowly in their previous games. 2. SA are the most vulnerable team against spin right now in the semis. 3. They have not faced Amit Mishra some times in recent past.That gives IND an edge. 4. IND has been playing in Bangladesh for last 40-45 days. 5. Players like Yuvraj , Kohli and Raina like SA attack. 6. IND has the advantage of knowing the pitch. So eagerly awaiting for the semis and best of luck india for the final.

  • Jagger on April 3, 2014, 3:09 GMT

    South Africa can consider themselves lucky they had the better of the pitches and opposition in the lead up. Australia had to play the Asia Cup winner on the same pitch for their first game, the title holders for the second, and the tournament favourites for the third!

    One would hope the ICC could get their act together and schedule their tournaments to a location and time where dew-fall does not decide the winner.

  • on April 2, 2014, 20:09 GMT

    From now on Dew factor is not the only one to be counted, you can count the " LUCK FACTOR" also, specially since is 20 over game . Good luck any of the 4 teams .

  • PROPHESIER on April 2, 2014, 19:39 GMT

    @ LakshithaR, Dont be under false impression that SL dominated india during mid 90's to mid 2000's and don't miseducate ur fellow srilankan fans. You are misinformed abt Srilanka dominated India during mid 90's to mid 2000's.Where do you have these stats? Go check cricinfo statsguru. Srilanka had dominated india only during 1996-98/99 period. In this period Srilanka won 11 and lost 6 times to india (11-6, this called domination). If u look at 1996-2006 they are pretty much equal Sri-20 Ind-19. During 2000-2010 India won 29 and Srilanka won 21. I don't need to tell u stats in the last 3-4 years coz, I'm sure u r aware of the story. So the fact is Srilanka dominated India only for 2-3 year period. Get ur facts right.

  • Cool_Joy on April 2, 2014, 18:45 GMT

    Though I am a SL fan, I like both SL and WI. Looking forward to a good contest. Go Lanka Go!!!

    Cheers from Canada.

  • ProdigyA on April 2, 2014, 17:31 GMT

    Gayle went for a duck in the last match against Pak. Im sure thats not going to happen again. I have a feeling he is going to be the man of the match tomorrow or at least play an important part in helping WI win against SL.

    So SL better watch out for Gayle.

  • bhriguaneja on April 2, 2014, 16:35 GMT

    I don't know whats the point of these games. Every one here seems to know who will win or get to the finals. I just want to see good cricket. It doesn't matter who wins.

  • kaluwa on April 2, 2014, 15:53 GMT

    Chndimal? Will he joing again as a captain? Crszzzzzzy. Might be turning point the match. Even he is not suitable for ODI.

  • on April 2, 2014, 15:46 GMT

    As a SA fan i m glad that we are facing Ind in the semis other than SL or WI. Ind is a strong team but the stats shows Ind has always been uncomfortable against us. Recent stats shows we have beaten them more often than they have beaten us. Even in the WC11 the champion Indian team lost to us in Mirpur. Dhaka is the same city where SA won their only ICC tournament beating WI in the final. Will there b a repeat . But one thing for sure, i would rather meet Ind or WI than SL. SL is the most balanced and best equipped T20 team at the moment. Ind might have better record against SL head to Head but that does not make Ind better than SL in T20 in world stage. For Ex. Pak has a better Head to Head record against Ind that does not make Pak better than Ind! The ranking tells the true story cos it records the win loss ratio overall. As a Saffer i would be comfortable facing Ind over SL any day. Go Proteas!

  • die_hard_cricketer on April 2, 2014, 15:32 GMT

    There's no big differences in the teams in the top 4 ... T20 is just a big slog-fest. Not real cricket. Whoever comes off on the day takes it, theres not much tactical advantage. The format probably favors a team of big-hitters (although even thats not always the case - ala australia)

    It is sad India will have such an advantage on being accustomed too and recently playing so many games on the pitch, it would have been nice to have more fair conditions so it can be more down to the teams on the day - but thats what it is.

    India on that pitch are the team to beat, of the four left SA probably has best chance of toppling them. But all teams fail at some point, and SA have been riding the edge a while (which is unusual!). Will be interesting games.

    Good luck to all. Lets hope for excitement, but most importantly fairness (Reviews should be considered in T20 WC) - adds to the drama.

  • Stat1977 on April 2, 2014, 15:32 GMT

    India's luck of winning matches will be ended by SA!Enjoy the moment Indian fans.Luck is not always there.

  • Snambidi on April 2, 2014, 15:10 GMT

    In my opinion ,for a good team & good players who know how to face balls & leave them alone when strike not required,the ground conditions do not make any difference. This opinion is more relevant from the fact that Australia & West Indies in their good old days were not affected by Ground conditions. They always dominated wherever they played & lifted trophies one after another. So this gossip of Ground conditions just contribute only to put psychological pressure on the teams & Players. climatical conditions are different.These conditions adversely affect the prospects of every team particularly after introduction of Duckworth Lewis method. What really needed is the removal of D/W method which seems to be absurd. Though it helps to decides winner the manner in which the decision is taken is nothing but absurd. ICC should consider dropping D/W method & provide additional days for the matches. In the olden days also cricket played & people apprecited the game. So the need is restoring

  • The-love on April 2, 2014, 15:06 GMT

    Did anyone notice??Kohli,AB,Gayle and Dilshan represent same franchise in IPL.When they come together,they don't win tournament but separately doing wonders for their respective countries.

  • on April 2, 2014, 14:52 GMT

    Exciting 4 this ! One could argue for pak but this does look like the best 4 teams on display. T20s aint supposed to have pitch discussions and bowlers winning matches, or so we thought ! But look at this discussion thread. This world cup has shown its still cricket, even if its only 20 overs. The windies are back as a serious force, netherlands upset england, australia showed how NOT to approach this challenge. Bangla have put together a seriously entertaining set of matches here !

  • on April 2, 2014, 14:20 GMT

    Once again shameless people commenting about SLs defeat against WI..we saw a lot of them shouting prior to SL vsNZ match..suddenly they dissapeared from this world..what we have to say to these shameless people is we hv no interest abt your comments..yes..In semifinal stage a match can be anyone game..the team plays well, will win..as Srilankan we are not worry to defeated by a team with good spirit whose players are not big headed fish,mates who know respect the opposition,a team works under a captain who has a courage to say a word appreciation abt the opposition without blaming whether and saying various stupid excuses..So you people waste your time here commenting on our game..If you dont mind go youtube and listen to the speech from Brendon mccullum in post match presentation match against SL and see the defferent of a true gentleman of the game..

  • on April 2, 2014, 14:11 GMT

    Clearly indians and windies have slight advantage since they are playing in these conditions for couple of games. waiting for the great encounters

  • cric4ind on April 2, 2014, 14:08 GMT

    As an Indian fan i would like to say that India's main challenge will be defeating SA in the semis. Trust me this is not going to be easy. I won't be surprised if India looses the semis.

    SL is a good team but if it is IND/SL finals remember it will be MSD who will have better nerves. We never know we may even see an SA/WI finals. I saw some Pakistanis hoping for an SA/WI finals to vent out their frustration. Pakistan what you actually need is good batting training sessions with Nepal and Afg.

  • on April 2, 2014, 14:02 GMT

    If I make an assumption about srilankans based on the comments from some of their fans, it will be a wrong stereotype. I have been to SL and it is not true. Similarly other people from other countries too should realize that fans here are a minor representation of India.

    Back to the Cricket - India will face a speed test as Steyn does not need any help from the pitches. AB can score against any bowler. So India must be wary. SL vs WI is method and flair vs flair with some method. WI looks good but you never know. If SA go through, they might win it. India hopefully can bring some cheer amid so much gloomy news. SA know India well - fauf,Ab, steyn, albie, morne, parnell, amiller, nd duminy play in the IPL. Miller and Albie are big hitters. Amla is good. Fauf dangerous. India don't have a surprise weapon in bowling in case spin doesn't work. It could be a thriller.

  • on April 2, 2014, 14:01 GMT

    As far as I am sure you wont post it , I will still take this peaceful time in office to jot this down. Being an Indian fan I would definitely want them to win the cup. But a corner of my heart prays for a WI vs SA finals, and wouldn't that be something. Both teams sharing so much through the IPL, knowing so much of each other, it would be a real treat to watch players as Gayle, Bravo, Narine, Badree, AB , Duminy , Steyn , du Plessis , Amla ,all on the same field fighting for glory ! Since both have had a history (recent or old) to implode under pressure, well then, wouldn't it be a sight to see who emerges on top ! And yeah my fantasy team is going to include at least 7 of them ! Take your pick people, you score most, when something out of expectation happens ! :P

  • on April 2, 2014, 14:01 GMT

    Any of these teams can win ! This is not new news to any cricket follower. What is new however, is how West Indies is progressing as the tournament goes forward. It seems likely a India/West Indies final. India have the depth batting and bowling, which will decide the win ! Don't count out the counter attack thou !

  • BigINDFan on April 2, 2014, 13:58 GMT

    SA, SL and Ind are balanced sides with good players of spin. Windies will find it tough against SL unless Simmons and Samuels play well in the middle overs. Gayle is a lottery since he may struggle against the spinners or crash some quick runs. Ind-SA match will be a close one unless AB or Kohli run away with the match. The best teams have entered the semis so it will be a great next 3 games with anyone capable of lifting the cup. If India do make it to the finals they will lift the cup since they are big on momentum rather than skill.

  • on April 2, 2014, 13:55 GMT

    west indies should easily beat sri Lanka. west indies have not played under pressure. sri Lanka have been under pressure. sri Lanka batting is very weak compared to the west indies .

  • on April 2, 2014, 13:51 GMT

    Looking at the old records , South Africa gonna lose in semifinals and Srilanka gonna lose in finals even if they manage to win semi's. So its either India or West Indies who gonna make it again. India never lose a semi final in world series under dhoni captaincy.

    Hey Srilankans it doesnt mean how many times u reached final. World always talk about winner not the losers.

  • lovesanga on April 2, 2014, 13:49 GMT

    I think mahela & MSD is the best captains of spin bowling ...chandimal dont derserve to be captain ...but i like to see SL in finals ...hope that the best team win the T20 cup good luck SL .....WI,IND & SA

  • SLC-2020 on April 2, 2014, 13:49 GMT

    I think this is a good semi-final... because SL being the runner-up in last t20-WC, (losing to WI in the Final) they should beat the current Champions first and proceed to the Final. This is the best way to win the Final and become the True Champions, if they can. Hope the umpires would let the game played in a fair manner for the sake of true spirit of sport! All the best to both sides!

  • Protears on April 2, 2014, 13:45 GMT

    I am somewhat surprised and pleased that the team made the Semi finals, beyond what I was expecting and hopefully we can put in a good effort on Friday against the favourites to win this event.

    I still wish we will play our best suited players to the format, with Khaya Zondo, Reeza Hendricks, Stiaan Van Zyl, Dane Piedt and Robbie Frylick at home its a mystery as to why Albie, Tsotsobe and Phangiso are there.

  • on April 2, 2014, 13:34 GMT

    Certainly SL is the most consistent team in T20i cricket,So they deserve to be in semi finals.As usual Indian fans are over estimating their team after few good performances,but I think they will face a huge challenge from SA in semis,So as I feel all the teams have a good chance,bcz all have good spinners.So dear Indians its too early to cry.

  • Munafis810 on April 2, 2014, 13:33 GMT

    @Hareendra : During Asia cup..the Indian team was young and captained by Kohliwho is just 25 and learning capatiancyi. Agreed they did not make it to final. But dont forget this inexperienced Indian team stretched Pakistan and SL to the last over and last 2-3 wkts. It took Afridi (15 years experience) and Sanga (15 years experience) all their best effort to somehow overcome this young team in the last over. With a little bit of luck both results could have gone other way. So your assessment that the Indian team has no great future is probably going to be proved false. Instead of Kohli ..Rohit could also be a great captain..Dont forget has lead MI to Champions league and IPL victory in short span of two years.

  • 10000000 on April 2, 2014, 13:31 GMT

    All is trash, for any champion palyer - no ground in the world is excuse. These two teams have lot of champions/match winners on their day. so beware of them for the next games.

  • Basil777 on April 2, 2014, 13:31 GMT

    No 1 Batsman in world (AB); No 1 Bowler in the world (Steyn); India be afraid; be very afraid

  • KingOwl on April 2, 2014, 13:30 GMT

    Wicket being unpredictable for a big ICC tournament is far from ideal. We want to see the talent of the teams determine the outcome, not the nature of the pitch. I am not sure why the ICC does not ensure that there is consistency in pitches for major tournaments. Their only consideration seems to be to ensure that India are in the final stages by giving them turning pitches all the way. It happened in SL and it is happening now. SL got unfavourable conditions, yet topped the group. I think SL will not have a problem adjusting to the new conditions, although they would have preferred to play 'non-white teams' on fast, bouncy tracks.

  • ArvindKejriwal_mfpatel810rediff on April 2, 2014, 13:27 GMT

    I think it will be WI-Ind final. Sammy had said he had a feeling these two teams will most likely meet again after the league game. Somehow that seems to be true. But then again it could be SA-WI too...afterall in T20 one over can change any game

  • Yousufahmed1 on April 2, 2014, 13:24 GMT

    Definition of a CAPTAIN in Sri Lanka. Anyone who can stand on the field for 20 overs and has an average of around 12 with a S/R of 92 in T20s is our captain. And ofcourse he should be able to go out for the toss and dance after he takes a catch. Hail the LIONS. LOL.

  • on April 2, 2014, 13:18 GMT

    Can't find a logic for some comments of Indians in these pages.....feel like there is no difference between these critics and Indian players.This is the same thing we observe from stubborn players like Kohli and Dhawan (joking even for an injury of opposition player-Watson in last Ind series- the first and only such incident watch in my life) in the field... Dear all,,,good cricket will win always and as a proud Sri Lankan, I always pray for Lion's victory! Win or loose....ppl need to be patient and accept. Seems some Indians never know this. Believe this is the reason that Indian players insure their homes for violence!!! thankfully there is no such a requirement here,,,,,we love cricket and our players!! Indian friends,,,,be patient for another 04 days, u'll will find the deserve champions... Wishing all the very best to Lions to bring the cup home!!!!!

  • on April 2, 2014, 13:16 GMT

    Dear srilankas --please do not cosider Herath would deliver the same again--it is some thing rare to happen ..however please plan if herath could take only take 2 wickets ( realistic) and give 30 runs --rest 3 wickets and runs to be controlled ...

    Also Badree and Narine consitantly delivering five wickets throughout the tournment so--please becareful do not neglect Gayle and smith..they are the ones come when needed most and presure situations :

    Westindies has 65% chance and Srilanka 35 % : India has 65% chance and SA has 35& and in final its anybody's game..

  • on April 2, 2014, 13:08 GMT

    I am srilankan , and srilanka is poor team selection what is chandimal doing as a captain and batsman? his Avarage 13 strike rate 92 what is that? thirimanne is far better than chandimal , thiri score 21 last match against kiwis . in tough time , when no presure for thirimanne example srilanka will not loosing wicket 1 or 2 more than 13 overs thirimanne can hit clear the roof . another ponit chandimal out of form we all srilankan fans know that. so many mahindha rajapaksa politics behind srilankan cricket , i think chandimal is son of mahinda rajapaksa;relative or sanath relativ poor chandimal he can not score 2 3 only 0 time will say who will be champions?

  • Herath-UK on April 2, 2014, 13:06 GMT

    In a way Mendis should also play with Herath & Senanayake;his problem was the wet ball but with a gripping ball he could be unplayable; in fact in the last T20 final WI were falling like flies until a fluke innings by Samuel. However if goes for runs then there is Herath cover.We should not play a spinner from the 15th over when the WI batsmen are going with a do or a die approach that's what is their approach. Ajmal was taken apart because of this attitude as losing wickets are not a concern at that time.However we 've the luxury of Malinga to take care in those final overs which other teams do not have.We've always done well in the ICC competition against WI except the last final so I'm sure for great win to Lions!

  • SandipManjrekar on April 2, 2014, 13:03 GMT

    SA, IND & WI are 3 deserved teams to be in SEMIs. I would prefer PAK or NZ to forth team as they looked more deserved than SL. SL benefited by pitch condition & one should accept the fact that Chittagong pitch was not up to min reqd standards.

    I would back India to be in one of the finalists but I would feel happy if SA would go into final just because they are exceptional teams in world cricket other than Oz.

    After ruling the world over 2 decades, WI was struggling till now. But if they win this championship, they truly deserved this. They have quality stuff that any T20 side requires. The depth of this team is exceptional.

    AUS/NZ/ENG had sent fresh legs in their teams. They faltered because of inexperience, unfit pitch conditions, deprived of some luck & poor planning by team mgmt. Even though they played well & missed by narrow margin.

    PAK is good team nothing required more except to change some old tyres/tubes of its vehicle.

    SL is most luckiest team to reach semis.

  • gung-ho on April 2, 2014, 12:57 GMT

    @Hareendra: if you are privy to information about the Indian dressing room, please do tell. what makes you think that cricketers will fight in public? they won't, because individually, each and every one of them have more money than almost whole teams combined. moreover, if they are discontent, they will just focus on their IPL franchises and not squabble over who gets to be the captain of the Indian Cricket team. How are things looking for you, once Jayawardane, Sangakkara, Malinga and Dilshan leaves? Oh wait, how old is Herath again?

  • ArvindKejriwal_mfpatel810rediff on April 2, 2014, 12:54 GMT

    @LakshithaR : SL dominated India only for a couple of years you can say

    For all SL fans claiming to thrash India for decades - here are stats to support your theory. India SL bilateral series record since 1997 - because before 1996 SL was a considered minnow so sparing series losses records before 1996 becos I am such a nice person. India in Sri Lanka ODI Series 2012 India 4-1 (5) , Sri Lanka in India ODI Series 2009/10 India 3-1 (5 , India in Sri Lanka ODI Series 2008/09 India 4-1 (5) , India in Sri Lanka ODI Series 2008 India 3-2 (5) , Sri Lanka in India ODI Series 2006/07 India 2-1 (4) , India in Sri Lanka ODI Series 2006 drawn 0-0 (3) , Sri Lanka in India ODI Series 2005/06 India 6-1 (7) , India in Sri Lanka ODI Series 1997 Sri Lanka3-0 (3) . Not to mention the worldcup final 2011 was also one of the major India thrashing SL as usual match and can be counted as major victory over SL.

  • LakshithaR on April 2, 2014, 12:30 GMT

    Contd... So my Indian friends, we used to beat you often one time, and now you are beating us often in limited overs cricket; where does it say the tides cannot turn again?

    And a lot of Indian friends point out SL loosing four Finals, in the previous ICC events, as if it is a thing of shame! For God's sake, what an achievement to reach 4 Finals straight! Did any other team including strong India able to achieve that??? We are extremely proud of SL's achievements in ICC events.

    Going over to the semi between India and SA, no doubt India looks the stronger team and holds the upper hand in Subcontinental conditions. But guys, this is T20 - any player can have his day and win the match for his country and SA has enough classy players capable of just that! Same goes for both SL and WI.

    Here's hoping for great set of semi-finals, hopefully with a Sri Lankan win, and an even better Finals, again hopefully with a Sri Lankan win. :-) Cheers and good luck!

  • LakshithaR on April 2, 2014, 12:22 GMT

    To place my cards upfront, I am a SL fan, and I am worried about the prospects of meeting India in the Finals. I feel strangely confident that we will beat the WIs tomorrow, of course my confidence is no guarantee that it will happen.

    Partly I am hoping SA wil win the next semis 'cos we have a better record against them in recent times; and partly I am hoping it will be India, for we need some closure on that 2011 debacle.

    Whom are we kidding guys, it is open for all to see that our record against India over the past few yaers is pathetic. Their batsmen had the upper hand against all our bowlers in recent times. BUT, during the golden age of SL cricket i.e. mid 90s to mid 2000s, SL similarly had the upper hand over India in limited overs cricket. Jayasuriya and company used to slay the Indian bowlers, forcing few of them in to retirement - or have my Indian friends forgotten? to be contd.

  • on April 2, 2014, 11:50 GMT

    Sri Lanka looks wonderfully settled, well experienced and well balanced with three of the worlds highest run scores,Slinger Malinger,Swingin Kula,Dashing Kusal,Wizard Rangana,Composed Mathews,Al round Thissara and Captain Chandi. This team is very pleasing to the eye and facts speaks for there achievements.The WI, IND,SA are no exception and looks really imposing backed with lot of class,power hitting and most importantly lot of momentum.There for there is hardly any thing to be picked between the teams from the recant encounters. It will jot down to who plays the best cricket on the day and who handles pressure well and who wins little encounters like restricting a two to a single.Cz take my word people there going to be big sixes,Bamboozled stampings and brilliant catches. Differences might be who hit the wicket when a batsmen who is on 49 and been run out or the boundary you saved in the cow corner.

  • ramz30380 on April 2, 2014, 11:47 GMT

    @Hareendra - the same was said whn GAvaskar, Kapil Dev, Ganguly, Anil Kumble, Dravid, Lakshman & Sachin left. Some players are irreplaceable for the impact they have on the game & on cricket lovers in general - but there will be ppl who will put their hand up.

    So the team will carry on - the level of exposure is important. Ind players have plenty of it thanks to the IPL, the India-A & under-19 tours. With the IPL young players are exposed to world beaters and hence learn a lot from them. Dunno whether u have heard there is a guy called Sanju Samson - v much like Dhoni but young - and he is only 18 yrs of age...

    Virat is a little hot headed when he is playing - as a captain he has been otherwise and offlately he has shown immense maturity... so u never know - Virat may not b like a Dhoni but someone like a Ganguly an agressive leader both on and off the field!!!

    Moreover mate, I think every team will go thru this - Sanga, Mahela, Dilshan, Malinga, Herath are all older than MSD!

  • LALITHKURUWITA on April 2, 2014, 11:31 GMT

    I saw some comments criticizing SL & SA should not be in Semis. SL won 3 matches and lost to Eng after a close fight. SA also won 3 matches lost SL by just few runs. But NZ was thrashed by SL, Eng by Netherlands and Netherlands by SL, So SL and SA deserved to be in Semis. Ind won all matches and WI won 3 matches and narrowly lost to Ind. But Pak was thrashed by WI, Aus by Ind and BA by WI. So Ind and WI deserved to be in Semis. So 6 bottom teams were at least thrashed by in one match. So they should not be in Semis. Please do not these 4 teams. They are the best.

  • on April 2, 2014, 11:31 GMT

    the team which bats first in SL-WI match will win because both teams because both teams have a good bowling attack to defend any target and also west indies batting is unpredictable and sri lanka lacks firepower in batting to chase above 160.i hope SL win because beating them in finals is easier than west indies.south Africa match is a cakewalk for us.

  • on April 2, 2014, 11:24 GMT

    as we face the semi the line up for the wi and sl will focus on k.perera=smith,dilshan=gyle,jayaverdhanae=simmons,sagakara=bravo,simmons=mathews,sagakara=sammy but windies will the batting clash with eussel,ramdin etccc.

    in the bowling it is going to be stronkie=kushera,malinga=narine,hearth=badree and the windies have two all rounders in form off russel,samy,samuvels to win the bowling as the si missed by sl .i do hope a wi win the semi and on papers it is posibily

  • Qa_ankit on April 2, 2014, 11:05 GMT

    As an Indian, I was amused and amazed with Herath. He was unstoppable. Nothing extra hip hop thing in him, but something called as Extra Ordinary. Simple, old fashioned. But deadly. Same goes for Mishra. Both are old fashioned. Nothing special but everything perfect. It will be a perfect match if india play final with S.Lanka. But no prediction. This is T-20. 3 overs can turn match. But for me India is having easy semi than S.Lanka. They have W.Indies to beat which is currently can become harder than mountain. But still magic of Jaywendane, Sanga and Malinga can bring something extra ordinary for them. Good luck teams. See you at final.

  • Hareendra on April 2, 2014, 11:00 GMT

    Indians have a really good team no doubt. But the day Dhoni leaves its all coming down like a pack of cards. Imagine if the likes of Kohli were made captain. Team mates would start fighting each other out in public. The team would fracture and signal the end of Indian Cricket.

  • on April 2, 2014, 10:59 GMT

    I think I agree with some of the above, Its South Africas time. They certainly have some of the top batmen in the world, and hey, who knows, Phangiso could get a run instead of one of the quickies.

  • on April 2, 2014, 10:57 GMT

    Sri Lankan team has already won the Asia Cup playing in all the surfaces in Bangladesh. Accordingly they have the best idea about how the pitches behave (since they have been in a tour as well). Many Indian fans predict a WI vs IND final. Anything is possible my friends anything.. SL vs Ind WI vs Ind SL vs SaF WI vs Saf,,, all these are possibilities. But on the paper all the four teams have great strengths. The team that executes them well will definitely win the game. Being a SL fan I clearly believe that there is a higher possibility of SL vs Ind final.. Well it is revenge time for the Sri Lankans..Whilst wishing good luck for all the four teams I wish all the very best of luck for the poor partial spectators who relinquish their idiotic behavior by putting damn comments.. GO LIONS GO.. DESPITE WIN OR LOOSE WE SL FANS ALWAYS LOVE OUR TEAM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • kubbikhan_afg on April 2, 2014, 10:49 GMT

    Srilanka is a quality team with quality spinners but west indies players are hard hitters of spin.. they murdered ajmal's over for 24... So eagerly waiting for tomorrow's encounter supporting Westindies... West indies and India are tournament favorities

  • on April 2, 2014, 10:36 GMT

    My point of View..India will Win semi and final,because he only performed well in all department. Of course i accept that point T20 game is mind game anything happen!! Which team perform well in that time,take over the match, i believe that capabilities have Indian team and WI. So finally my thought India and West Indies in Final.

    All the Best """IND vs WI"""""FINAL"""""""

  • ramz30380 on April 2, 2014, 10:29 GMT

    @ITJOBSUCKS I am an Indian fan but I agree with u tht AB is the best bat across all formats at the moment and Virat is just behind him. Yuvi's injury wasnt serious and will be fit for the semis.

    Ur right Virat has a better record while chasing whn compared to his record batting first - but even thn he is better than many other batsmen around the world.

    Suresh Raina has a fantastic record while batting first - so Virat's tiny hurdle will be made good by him and mind u he is in good form as well.

    With due respects to Steyn(who I think is still is the best bowler in the world) he may not be effective in the Mirpur pitch and moreover his pace will be perfect for batsmen to go after him.

    It will be interesting to see who Ind will field come the 4th Dhawan or Rahane, Mohit or Shami! Coz i thought the replacements did a better job than the replaced!

  • nothingnew on April 2, 2014, 10:22 GMT

    @anoop3301 hey man did you see . Even we have exprience guys in the team .We know who are "FLAT TRACK BULLies" we saw them while playing SA , NZ and other countries outside Your flat track . SL always comes to the final which players are playing .All the time SL has brilliant team Squard . We showed that what your captain said after loosing wickets . Always blaming bowlers . what ever happened to SL . They are not blaming to each other like you . We know how to come to final all the time . You team like sound wave .always drop and down . will see next match what happen to you . Best luck SL

  • on April 2, 2014, 10:03 GMT

    SA won't choke this time because they are not at all expected to be at this stage. this means that there's nothing to lose for them. wish SA could pull it off at least this time.

  • on April 2, 2014, 9:59 GMT

    i saw some under knowledged person said that India is a better team than SL cuz of the stats. but when u see pak vs ind stats it clearly says that pakistan is a better team than ind so now where in the heaven r u ???

  • ramz30380 on April 2, 2014, 9:59 GMT

    @SLisBestinEarth - tough cometition in Group 1 for SL?! Mate, please really?!!! Eng, NZ, SA and ND are tough competition??!!!! I have great respect for the SL team, but u fans demean them to such an extent....

    Facts: SL was not tested this far - all these countries in grp 1 are pathetic players of spin - the whole world agreed except for some SL fans tht Group 2 was the toughest even before the tourney started!!!

    The Chittagong pitch favored batsman and not fast bowlers!!! barring the last day when it turned...

    With due respect to AB(my fav SA) and Amla, so far have fared well against only the weak Eng bowling on a batting paradise - Mirpur will be different!

    Imran Tahir has been good but any avg Ind player will play spin well - tht will not be a concern for Ind

    For the 1st time SL will be tested against good quality spin (if Tahir was sucessful against them there is no doubting the calibre of Naraine)

    SL vs WI will be a tough match; Ind vs SA - well Ind hold the aces!

  • Ramansilva on April 2, 2014, 9:57 GMT

    @siddhartha87, Where were you man. Didn't you know that SL team beat IND team two times already in 2014 in neutral grounds. WT20 are played in neutral grounds too. Be afraid. very very afraid.

  • onebump on April 2, 2014, 9:56 GMT

    Not sure why my fellow SL fans are talking about beating India in the finals. Beating the WI in the semi-final is a mammoth task as they have so much momentum and bat deep down with some heavy hitters. So, lets get through the SF and then talk about hot to beat India or SA. Get sensible guys.

    Same goes to these insane Indian supporters who just want to get into a cat fight. Have a sensible converstion and banter....

  • roshrosh on April 2, 2014, 9:54 GMT

    To all the Indian fans here... to make you all happy... Yes you are the best team the world has ever seen... No team can beat you, no player can match the ability of Indian players... etc. etc. etc.... India just have to turn up for games... where as other teams have to try and win games... ENJOY...

  • Mutukisna on April 2, 2014, 9:52 GMT

    According to the Sky pundits, Ricky Ponting and Michael Atherton its going to be a India vs West Indies final. Fortunately for everyone, pundits do not decide the outcome. It is down to the players on the day! In the meantime, reading the input in this column the bickering and insults between the Indian and Sri Lankan fans in this column has started. It is only a game of cricket and not a matter of life and death! It would be poetic justice if the final is between South Africa and the West Indies. All the neutrals will then have a good hearty laugh.

    As a Sri Lankan fan (who comments only on Sri Lankan performances), win or lose, I want two things for the SL team to change from the last match. 1. If Dilshan is playing please continue playing the dilscoop but do NOT try the risky reverse dilscoop, and 2. Thisara Perera please try to get bat on every ball if possible, and not hit thin air as this will ensure more boundaries, both fours and sixes. Good luck despite what the pundits say.

  • fjurang on April 2, 2014, 9:33 GMT

    When I look at the West Indians performances uptodate makes me nervous when think of Sri Lankans taking on them tomorrow

  • on April 2, 2014, 9:30 GMT

    Well, why Sri Lanka would be jealous, they have the highest test runs, Highest ODI runs, Highest T20 runs. Also they were the continuously second best team in ODI and T20. Most people see how humble and courages they are. Even people throwing stones at a tree that is frui-full not fruit-less.

  • on April 2, 2014, 9:25 GMT

    only change SL should make is bring prasanna in for dilshan with Mahela openning and thiri must stay in the team due to two reasons 1)his form 2)narine less effective against left handers as we saw yesterday even thanvir went after him.SA must stay with 4 seamers coz any how indians play spin well.in WI point of view they should drop a bowler n bring a batsman in and india stay with the same team

  • on April 2, 2014, 9:19 GMT

    I cant understand why people think SL is better than INDIA. if you see INDIA-SL stats over the last 6 years, you will find that INDIA has been dominating SL in all 3 formats of the game. INDIA-SL last 9 tests, India won 4 & SL won 3, here the main thing is that 2 out of INDIA's four tests victories came on SL soil....INDIA played 5 T20Is against SL with INDIA winning 3 & loosing 2.

    Since 2008, INDIA played 49 ODIs against SL, INDIA won 29 & SL won only 17 with one tie and 2 no results. In the last 6 years, there were 4 bi-lateral series played between INDIA & SL with INDIA winning all of them, 3 out of those 4 were played on lankan turf. India won 2010 Asia cup beating SL in the final & before that India also won a tri-series (NZ was the third team) in 2009 in lanka beating SL in the final. Even outside subcontinent, INDIA always had upper hand on SL.

  • sanjeevmukherjee2006 on April 2, 2014, 9:15 GMT

    @ Deep-LK and others, first beat India and AUs in at least one test match in india and then talk in case u dont know SL has yet to win a single test in India and Australia lol

  • on April 2, 2014, 9:11 GMT

    @ImonG you said the only players in SA who play Spin well is Amla, Devilliers and Duminy.... if they play well, SA will have a defendable total. Steyn defended 7 of a last over, however, you forget, Parnell only came in for the last match and he took the top 3 out. Most of the SA sid3e plays IPL and faces Mishra, Ashwin etc so i dont think spin will be a big factor as they say. also, note that Tahir is in the top 3 wicket takers this tournament, and that too playing in Chittagong... he would be a problem to India as well... SA is in a mood to win the cup, and i say they will, the only thing that will stop them from progressing to the finals is the Weather on Friday. (Cricinfo says its going to rain. and if it does, then India goes thru)

  • TrulyIndiancricfan on April 2, 2014, 9:05 GMT

    @ Deep-LK ... What problem do you have with Viraat... Ohhh... he's been more successful than your legends even though he's so young..

  • blthndr on April 2, 2014, 8:57 GMT

    @Jass Jayasinghe ..."Kula Should drop due to pitch condition".......hav u seen how economical and effective Bhuvneshwar Kumar in this tournament not just due to his line n length for also his ability to swing the new ball....most of the fan are saying this a spinner wicket nothing for fast bowler...bt if u can swing the new ball atleast u can be successful in power plays and the pressure can get u wickets for ur spinners.....I think Sl has the most balanced attack in this tournament apart from spinners they hav the best death bowler and kulasekara will complement this attack for his ability of swing the new ball ....

  • Chaminda_Rat on April 2, 2014, 8:54 GMT

    @ TrulyIndiancricfan will see which teams go home next two days.

  • TrulyIndiancricfan on April 2, 2014, 8:39 GMT

    @ Deep-LK .. Note it one Netherland will beat Srilanka as well

  • golgoal on April 2, 2014, 8:36 GMT

    @Janith Pasindu Nanayakkara LOL still don't have the confidence to say "Lankans gonna win the finals". All you can say is "Lankans gonna make it to finals". Well I guess that happens to a team that wins 1 ICC trophy every 7yrs. LOL. Enjoy your 2 minutes of glory.

  • gimme-a-greentop on April 2, 2014, 8:33 GMT

    The fact that India have coasted through and SA have had to scrap might be a factor in a pressure game. Then again, it might not be, because the conditions certainly favour India. Besides Amla and AB, SA are at a distinct disadvantage against spin...QDK, JP, Miller: they have improved but are not naturally great against quality spin (all lefties too, which I'm sure will suit Ashwin). It's hard not to echo the pessimism of highveldhillbilly, we have been done in so many times before at this stage.

  • tearshan on April 2, 2014, 8:23 GMT

    @siddhartha87: Now I know how dangerous Sri Lanka is..Why Indians are so much worried about SL team. Bcz They are fear to see India go home without the cup. Good luck dhoni!you are the one and only gentleman I see in the team. All others are more or less similar to traditional Fans who only makes this place a noisy one.

  • Chaminda_Rat on April 2, 2014, 8:22 GMT

    @ siddhartha87 why do you think Sri lanka face India in the final. are you sure its India?

  • anvesh4444 on April 2, 2014, 8:18 GMT

    justtogood, how could you say Yuvi and Rohit are walking wickets, they are the reason why India in the semi finals now.

  • Deep-LK on April 2, 2014, 8:08 GMT

    @ siddhartha87 - India always super actors thinking no one can beat them specially Virat...note it man one day Netherlands will beat India

  • TrulyIndiancricfan on April 2, 2014, 8:07 GMT

    We would have liked SL to win their semis, so that our job woul be easier. But sadly they are going back tommorrow

  • on April 2, 2014, 7:59 GMT

    I am so much down after bad decision of umpires ..Two times bad decisions for Kusal. That's very badly effect. Good umpire and weather ..Will see nice match... Bless you all.. ;)

  • on April 2, 2014, 7:57 GMT

    My Sri Lankan team: 1)Kusal 2) Thiri 3) Mahela 4) Sanga 5) Mathiwes 6) Chaturanga 7) Sekkuge 8) thisara 9) sachithra 10) Rangana 11) Malinga

    Reasons : *Chandi and Dilshan should drop due to their performance *Kula Should drop due to pitch condition.

  • anoop3301 on April 2, 2014, 7:54 GMT

    @Janith Pasindu Nanayakkara: here goes the "FLAT TRACK BULLY" comment again. At least we are not "COLOMBO TRACK BULLIES" and we win world cups all around the world unlike SL teams which talk loud but unable to win anything significant on field. And a couple of "FLAT TRACK BULLIES" are going to retire after this tournament so not expecting you to win on flat tracks either in the future.

  • siddhartha87 on April 2, 2014, 7:39 GMT

    hopefully SL does not get into final. We have been tired of seeing getting them beaten by Indian.SL wins once in a year against India. Since they have just beaten India in Asia cup so they will win next in 2015 only.

  • CricketFirst on April 2, 2014, 7:35 GMT

    As Chandimal returns SL need to drop out-of-form Dilshan and retain in-form Thirimanne in the side. We simply cannot bowl 8 overs of slow medium pace from the combination of Anjelo, Thisara and Kulasekera. They wont trouble the batsmen and will concede more runs. So replace Kula with Prasanna or Lakmal based on the pitch conditions. SL team for 1st semi should be 1) Perera 2) Thiri 3) Mahela 4) Sanga 5) Chandi 6) Anjelo 7) Thisara 8) Sachi 9) Herath 10) Lakmal/ Prasanna 11) Malinga

    * If Prasanna plays instead of Lakmal then he will bat higher in the order. * Thiri should be able to take advantage of first 6 overs of PowerPlay. If not Thiri & Sanga should interchange their slots, means Sanga at 2 and Thiri at 4. * If SL make a good start at top order big men Anjelo, Thisara & Sachi should come earlier.

  • on April 2, 2014, 7:31 GMT

    From now on i will strain from bashing India because of 1 or 2, after all it's a game between humans, and i beg pardon if anyone hurt by my words in here, especially Indians. i just make an good Indian friend yesterday, after some heated words against each other on this forum, and then we become friends on FB afterwards. hope everyone follow the same, respecting each others abilities.. Come on it's the game and players we everyone loves. Peace

  • ASHOK1253 on April 2, 2014, 7:29 GMT

    Srilanka,west indies, India,South Africa: South africa are nto deserved to be in the semi finals they are quite ordinary in sometimes against Sri lanka, New Zealand,Netherlands. Steyns brilliance take them to semis. So this time SA had some luck, may be south africa will win there first ICC title this time, and SA need to play there 200% if they had to beat indian spinners or second chance is for Sri lanks who are coming to finals losing in finals, so this time they won do the mistakes.

  • on April 2, 2014, 7:18 GMT

    Well this article is bit of revealing who are under-dogs for the semis, but non the less South Africa proved how good they are and adaption will be happened accordingly, also they are full of surprises.... My logic with South Africa is they already proven their adaption by reaching to Semis. They are normally playing on Fast Ballers pitches. I believe they need one more good spinner. Watch out for De Villiers.... With SL, I believe that its the smallest country( geographically) but produced most talented players for cricket. If they can't adapt wiyh grounds they won't be position to be in Semi's. SL's trouble is their Captain not the adaption. If they keep Thirmanne Instead of Chandimal that will be the best Selection.

  • LALITHKURUWITA on April 2, 2014, 7:17 GMT

    It is the brain game. Good captains can change the game using right bowlers for right batsmen at the right time. You saw in some matches some captains made horrible decisions. I think Dhoni is the best. Anyway on the day any body can win hopefully I need last ball win matches to keep the excitement. Wish all 4 teams.

  • justtogood on April 2, 2014, 7:16 GMT

    Only advantage SA have is three walking wickets - Sharma, Yuvi, and Darwan!!! All up to dohni, kohli and the spin attack!!!

  • AB_DeVilliers on April 2, 2014, 7:13 GMT

    For those India peeps writing off SA - don't forget what happened in the 2011 WC, the only team who beat you. We have your number, and we know you don't like to play us.

  • on April 2, 2014, 7:12 GMT

    i think team sri lanka team must play without chandimal.team proved that they can win matches easily without him.there is no need to get a risk with playing out of form chandimal.his poor form is consistent.i think it is the right time to leave him to focus on his talents.play with thirimanne.

  • on April 2, 2014, 7:12 GMT

    If Sri Lanka wins it will be a tough challenge for india ahead

  • IndianCoolGuy on April 2, 2014, 7:11 GMT

    Apart from SA; India, WI, SL are having good spin resources. It is a t20 game and there are no favorites in a match. On a day any team can bean any team. So India cannot take SA lightly. They are week against Spin, and I am sure that MSD knows how to rotate his spin bowlers. Mishra will be the key. Ashwin is in good form. Jadeja still has not performed well according to his skill. If he performs well along with Raina, then it will be a hell of journey for SA in semis. Interesting to see MSD choose who as opener along with Rohit. Ajinkya or Dhawan? and who would be the 2nd pace bowler? Shami or Mohit?

    Tahir & Steyn both are wicket taking bowlers in SA team. in those 8 overs India should look for 50 runs without wickets, then India will win for sure.

  • on April 2, 2014, 7:02 GMT

    Though i want India to be in the finals, but looking at the moment it is highly doubtful considering the mood SA in.Mediocre Indian bowlers do not posses ability to attack on quality SA batters while Indian batters though they regarded as "FLAT TRACK BULLIES" will find it difficult against quality SA bowling attack. SA vs SL in Final and SL as winners

  • on April 2, 2014, 6:59 GMT

    @golgoal... Day before yesterday before the game between SL and NZ many Indian fans said same thing like you, Mark My word etc. then what was happen??, Buddy Mark my word SL gonna march in to Finals by beating WI tomorrow, visit here after if you have courage.lol

  • ImonG on April 2, 2014, 6:58 GMT

    Amla ABD & Duminy play spin really well. And other than Steyn , I don't see any other substantial threat in the SA team, of course if one is playing international cricket for SA, he has to be good, but there ain't no other Steyn in there. Tahir is a good bowler, but the Indians play spin very well, so that negates it. This would be a really tight one, I guess who ever handles pressure well will pull through. Advantage India, just because they have a better history of handling high pressure tight matches, but still its a tight 1.Though I would love India to win, being an Indian, but may the best team win.

    As for SL vs WI, my vote goes to SL because they are way more consistent, WI like PAK are a very unpredictable team, on their day they can defeat any team, but they also do implode very often. Another cracker of a match in store .

  • on April 2, 2014, 6:57 GMT

    knowing the ICC set up, SA have this one because for the first few years, no team would be allowed to win it twice :')

  • mzm149 on April 2, 2014, 6:53 GMT

    I hope and believe South Africans will break the curse of choking this time around. They have the best players of spin bowling in de Villiers and Amla. Duminy can also play spin well. Imran Tahir is in red hot form with the ball. He bowled really well in Chittagong where there was not much assistance for spin bowling whereas Mishra, Ashwin, Badree, Narine, Ajmal, Jadeja and the likes got help from the pitch. How can we forget Dale Steyn, the best fast bowler in any given conditions. The only weak links are out of form Morkel, not so good players of spin bowling in the form of du Plessis, Miller and de Kock. If Parnell and at least one of du Plessis, Miller and de Kock click, no one can beat South Africa. Best of luck!

  • on April 2, 2014, 6:43 GMT

    The smartest thing the WI did yesterday was win the toss and bat first. As Hafeez admitted even Pakistan wanted to bat first. SL, PAK, WI have zero confidence in themselves when it comes to chasing. This weakness must be exploited. It will be interesting if India make the final and face either SL or WI. If Dhoni wins the toss will he bat first or chase? What will SL/WI want? Bat first and remove the target pressure but bowl in the due? Very interesting.

  • on April 2, 2014, 6:33 GMT

    Sri Lanka should fire their all spring guns (RSSC) on tomorrow. Nuclear: Rangana heratha, Multibaral: Sachithra senanayake, Balastic: Sekkuge pressanna, Artillery: Chaturanga de silva

  • Prabahar_Trichy on April 2, 2014, 6:17 GMT

    Its not going to be easy for Indians to beat SA. Devillers & Amla best in the world has to handled in batting. Styen in Bowling. Devillers- Best batsman in the World. Kohli Next.

  • ITJOBSUCKS on April 2, 2014, 6:05 GMT

    @highveldhillbilly You've got the best fast bowler in the form of Steyn, the best batsmen across all formats via ABD(Indians might disagree) & Tahir isn't doing badly in this tournament !!!! SA has been losing knock out games since 92'WC, but there is a first time for everything in life....SA under 19 just won the WC few months ago...you never know...BTW, Yuvraj has injured his knee while playing football barefoot y'day!!!! SA need to get rid off Kohli esp if India are chasing b'coz there is no one better than kohli @ the moment & if Ind bat first, kohli rarely fires!!! Most of Kohli's best innings have come while batting second!!!

  • cricketlover80 on April 2, 2014, 5:58 GMT

    India will make the finals comparing the spin strength with SA. Hard to guess about SL and WI as both are similar. Whoever bats better on the day will win. SL has a habit of making it to finals of world tournaments and will be eying revenge for the last world t20 finals with WI.

  • on April 2, 2014, 5:57 GMT

    Some matches completed in last over without knowing who will win.. If this is not entertainment thn people still dnt knw what is cricket... Funny people

  • golgoal on April 2, 2014, 5:55 GMT

    Windies gonna hammer the Lankans. The Lankans will walk away with their tails between their legs. Mark my words.

  • Great_Chucker on April 2, 2014, 5:52 GMT

    @SLisBestinEarth SL had they played in Group 2 ,then BD fans would have rejoiced for their team's solitary win in group..

  • on April 2, 2014, 5:44 GMT

    I agree with eZoha..we need a balance between bat and Ball.. Anyway SA have gone further than what most of us expected and surely India must be favourites which means hopefully less pressure so they can play freely..GO SA

  • Great_Chucker on April 2, 2014, 5:43 GMT

    @Gihan Abeyratne Another SL complaining about umpiring,that bloke Kushal is nowhere near and has stiill to prove when you compare with Gayle ...SL should come up with better explanations for their mediocre players who may be Legends when playing in flat tracks of colombo...LOL

  • highveldhillbilly on April 2, 2014, 5:34 GMT

    SA are going to be killed on these pitches - India has a much better spin line up and their batsmen play better in these conditions. Reckon a India Sri Lanka final.

  • SLisBestinEarth on April 2, 2014, 5:32 GMT

    They wouldn't have qualified to semi-final have they been packed in Group 1 (They are not good/quality players against Fast&Short pitch deliveries.) Lankan lions will still lead the group if they are bundled in Group 2.

  • siddhartha87 on April 2, 2014, 5:31 GMT

    @eZoha i disagree.t20 is for fun and entertaintment. Where is the entertainment here?

  • subratachakrabarty on April 2, 2014, 5:11 GMT

    How astonishing it is to know that dew factor is such a deciding factor in this short format of the game. Speaking of the semis; I was expecting SA, India, SL and Pak to make it to semis. Three of the teams made it through. I gotta admit, I was pleasantly surprised to see WI making it to semis. Seems to me that WI were a new team altogether, particularly after yesterday's match, the way they played (or out played Pakistan) and proved the worthiness to be called as defending champions. I mean, they weren't looking like one in the beginning of the tournament, no offence meant. What will be interesting in the first semi will be the war b/w fast and furious Lasit and the calm cool headed Naraine and Badree; whether Herath will be able to repeat the magic? And most importantly, can we finally have some Gaylomania? Time will tell. For now, we can only say that T20 have become the bowlers game as well.

  • 9ST9 on April 2, 2014, 5:10 GMT

    typical bat-happy fan's complaining about pitches? " Not even one 200+ score?" please, if the game ran like you wished bowlers would be dead meat in the future. Thankfully we see the emergence of bowlers as match winners as time goes on in T20, Think of the first one in 2007 where batsmen made merry at will, games were decided by who could swing the bat harder. Now with the bowlers posing threats we see that the better batsmen survive. Only half-baked batting fan's(not even cricket fans) like 200+ scores in T20.

  • eZoha on April 2, 2014, 5:10 GMT

    @siddhartha87: Please switch to Baseball if you want to see sixes only. Cricket needs balance between bat and ball, and this World T20 pitches have provided that.

  • on April 2, 2014, 5:03 GMT

    It will be the repeat of 2011 final again and no about the winner too.....:)

  • on April 2, 2014, 4:35 GMT

    Sri Lanka played few games prior to this WC in Dhaka, Asia Cup etc so they know the pitch well, Sri Lanka got a good bowling unit and WI has the same, the only difference between two teams are WI got some big hitter's but SL don't got many, so far Kusal was kept silence by the umpires in the last two games so the key players are Kusal and Gayle. it will be an interesting contest tomorrow

  • SLisBestinEarth on April 2, 2014, 4:34 GMT

    Srilanka are unlucky for not playing in Dhaka Pitch (which suites theie taste of Play).. Still they lead the Group 2 table with tough opponents/groups SA,NZ,ENg (COnsidering pitch suits for Fast bowling). From now on there is no stop for Lankan Lions. With Mendis,Herath,Senanayaka, Malinga, Kula,Angelo,Dilshan defending any Target is possible. With Mahela, Sanga, Angelo, Perara's, Dilshan, Angelo srilanka lions can acheive any Target.

  • chandimasl on April 2, 2014, 4:18 GMT

    It is of course a challenge for sl and sa.if I mention about our team there is a serious issue with the captain chandimal.i do not think he should be replaced.but still I think dilshan should be replaced by prasanna.

    Because it can not afford to have an opener with poor form who scores runs below 100 strike rate in t20s.and also dhaka seems to be a more spin friendly pitch.in the warm up match the most successfull bowler against wi.even the leg spinners are the most successful in the tournament.so having him in the team is a luxury than dilshan.because dilshan's form is worry for the team.

    Anyway wi is tougher in this format.so come up with a good plan is essential for lions.

  • siddhartha87 on April 2, 2014, 4:16 GMT

    rubbish pitches.This kind of pitches will kill t20 cricket. What a boring t20 wc so far. Not even one 200+ score. Maxwell and Sammy are the only exciting thing in this boring wc.

  • on April 2, 2014, 4:10 GMT

    Our group level victory and lost factor is only bowling because these days our guys are batting very well in different conditions.So Mathews and Perera have to come back very well with their bowling for semi victory.....

  • SHER-A-PANJAB on April 2, 2014, 3:44 GMT

    Hi..Int-20 cricket ,does not matter ,when and where you are playing .You should bat decently and put runs on the board and bowlers try to defended that with the help of excellent fielding .that is it .. Indian batting line up is great one .it is very hard to stop them from the trophy again ....Let s see RSA can do this time ( only DALE and his fighters can do ) or ........Good luck SA

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  • SHER-A-PANJAB on April 2, 2014, 3:44 GMT

    Hi..Int-20 cricket ,does not matter ,when and where you are playing .You should bat decently and put runs on the board and bowlers try to defended that with the help of excellent fielding .that is it .. Indian batting line up is great one .it is very hard to stop them from the trophy again ....Let s see RSA can do this time ( only DALE and his fighters can do ) or ........Good luck SA

  • on April 2, 2014, 4:10 GMT

    Our group level victory and lost factor is only bowling because these days our guys are batting very well in different conditions.So Mathews and Perera have to come back very well with their bowling for semi victory.....

  • siddhartha87 on April 2, 2014, 4:16 GMT

    rubbish pitches.This kind of pitches will kill t20 cricket. What a boring t20 wc so far. Not even one 200+ score. Maxwell and Sammy are the only exciting thing in this boring wc.

  • chandimasl on April 2, 2014, 4:18 GMT

    It is of course a challenge for sl and sa.if I mention about our team there is a serious issue with the captain chandimal.i do not think he should be replaced.but still I think dilshan should be replaced by prasanna.

    Because it can not afford to have an opener with poor form who scores runs below 100 strike rate in t20s.and also dhaka seems to be a more spin friendly pitch.in the warm up match the most successfull bowler against wi.even the leg spinners are the most successful in the tournament.so having him in the team is a luxury than dilshan.because dilshan's form is worry for the team.

    Anyway wi is tougher in this format.so come up with a good plan is essential for lions.

  • SLisBestinEarth on April 2, 2014, 4:34 GMT

    Srilanka are unlucky for not playing in Dhaka Pitch (which suites theie taste of Play).. Still they lead the Group 2 table with tough opponents/groups SA,NZ,ENg (COnsidering pitch suits for Fast bowling). From now on there is no stop for Lankan Lions. With Mendis,Herath,Senanayaka, Malinga, Kula,Angelo,Dilshan defending any Target is possible. With Mahela, Sanga, Angelo, Perara's, Dilshan, Angelo srilanka lions can acheive any Target.

  • on April 2, 2014, 4:35 GMT

    Sri Lanka played few games prior to this WC in Dhaka, Asia Cup etc so they know the pitch well, Sri Lanka got a good bowling unit and WI has the same, the only difference between two teams are WI got some big hitter's but SL don't got many, so far Kusal was kept silence by the umpires in the last two games so the key players are Kusal and Gayle. it will be an interesting contest tomorrow

  • on April 2, 2014, 5:03 GMT

    It will be the repeat of 2011 final again and no about the winner too.....:)

  • eZoha on April 2, 2014, 5:10 GMT

    @siddhartha87: Please switch to Baseball if you want to see sixes only. Cricket needs balance between bat and ball, and this World T20 pitches have provided that.

  • 9ST9 on April 2, 2014, 5:10 GMT

    typical bat-happy fan's complaining about pitches? " Not even one 200+ score?" please, if the game ran like you wished bowlers would be dead meat in the future. Thankfully we see the emergence of bowlers as match winners as time goes on in T20, Think of the first one in 2007 where batsmen made merry at will, games were decided by who could swing the bat harder. Now with the bowlers posing threats we see that the better batsmen survive. Only half-baked batting fan's(not even cricket fans) like 200+ scores in T20.

  • subratachakrabarty on April 2, 2014, 5:11 GMT

    How astonishing it is to know that dew factor is such a deciding factor in this short format of the game. Speaking of the semis; I was expecting SA, India, SL and Pak to make it to semis. Three of the teams made it through. I gotta admit, I was pleasantly surprised to see WI making it to semis. Seems to me that WI were a new team altogether, particularly after yesterday's match, the way they played (or out played Pakistan) and proved the worthiness to be called as defending champions. I mean, they weren't looking like one in the beginning of the tournament, no offence meant. What will be interesting in the first semi will be the war b/w fast and furious Lasit and the calm cool headed Naraine and Badree; whether Herath will be able to repeat the magic? And most importantly, can we finally have some Gaylomania? Time will tell. For now, we can only say that T20 have become the bowlers game as well.