Windies aim to topple out-of-sorts Sri Lanka
Match FactsFriday, May 7, Bridgetown
Start time 1330 (1730 GMT)
The Big PictureSri Lanka's problems are mounting: Only Mahela Jayawardene has turned up with the bat. Kumar Sangakkara, the captain, is struggling. Sanath Jayasuriya is playing as a bowler. Muttiah Muraltharan is injured. Tillakaratne Dilshan is having a nightmare. Angelo Matthews too hasn't showed up yet. Even Lasith Malinga had a bad game. Sri Lanka were the most consistent team in the last ICC Twenty20; they have moved to the opposite end of the spectrum this year but still possess the men who can turn on the heat. Don't count them out. Not yet at least.
Dwayne Bravo has already spoken about how important his team feels about the home advantage and the crowd factor. They have been tinkering with their bowling. Kemar Roach played the first game and had excellent returns and was replaced by a spinner on a surface that aided turn in the second game. Roach should be back for the next game and though Ravi Rampaul leaked 52 runs from three overs against England, West Indies will rely on him and Darren Sammy to do the job.
Barbados has always provided a lively surface and it might play a big part tomorrow. Roach can hurry the best with his pace and bounce and considering the Sri Lankan top-order's iffy form, it should be interesting to see how they cope.
Form guide (most recent first)West Indies: WWLLL
Sri Lanka: WLLWL
Watch out for...
Kemar Roach has made Ricky Ponting look slow on the pull shot. Enough said. And unlike many seamers, he likes bowling yorkers with the new ball. He didn't have a great time in the IPL but the Kensington Oval pitch should help him.
Ajanta Mendis: The mystery isn't as puzzling as before, the carrom ball isn't cutting away enough as it used to - (remember the movement on that ball to Rahul Dravid?) - but the accuracy has returned in recent times. The two-fingered googly isn't hard to pick but is doing the job and he has had a reasonably good times against West Indies in the past.
West Indies (probable) 1 Chris Gayle (capt), 2 Shivnarine Chanderpaul, 3 Ramnaresh Sarwan, 4 Narsingh Deonarine, 5 Dwayne Bravo, 6 Kieron Pollard, 7 Denesh Ramdin (wk), 8 Darren Sammy, 9 Sulieman Benn, 10 Ravi Rampaul, 11 Kemar Roach.
Will Dilshan get another game? Will Thilan Thushara replace Suraj Randiv, the man who replaced Muralitharan?
Sri Lanka (probable) 1 Tillakaratne Dilshan, 2 Mahela Jayawardene, 3 Kumar Sangakkara (capt, wk), 4 Dinesh Chandimal, 5 Angelo Mathews, 6 Sanath Jayasuriya, 7 Chamara Kapugedera, 8 Nuwan Kulasekara, 9 Ajantha Mendis, 10 Lasith Malinga, 11 Thilan Thushara.
Pitch and conditionsAfter the slow and low pitches in Guyana, the fast bowlers have a lot to smile about in Barbados. The first day saw them picking 21 of 34 wickets. The batsmen from the subcontinent are likely to be peppered with the short stuff.
Stats and trivia
- Shivnarine Chanderpaul has just made eight runs from the two Twenty20 games he has played against Sri Lanka. On both occasions, he fell to Mendis.
- Mahela Jayawardene has the second-best strike rate (138.53) after Kevin Pietersen among batsmen who have scored more than 550 in Twenty20 internationals. With 622 runs in his kitty, Mahela Jayawardene is the fourth-highest scorer in Twenty20 format.
Quotes"We have got to be more consistent in the bowling department. Having conceded 191 runs against England, I think we just lacked some penetration and good line and length, but hopefully we can get it correct by the next round."
Chris Gayle wants more from his bowlers.
Sriram Veera is a staff writer at Cricinfo© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.