Sri Lanka will look to take an early lead against Afghanistan in the first game of the three-match series. This series will be crucial for both teams as they prepare for the World Cup. Sri Lanka has lost the last two ODI series and needs to find form in order to regain confidence. Afghanistan performed admirably against Pakistan recently, and they will strive to maintain that level of performance.
Afghanistan has a poor record against Sri Lanka, and their batsmen will face a difficult task in these conditions. Sri Lanka has won five of its eight home games. Their spinners are in top form. We anticipate a close game because both teams are evenly matched.
The 1st ODI between Sri Lanka vs Afghanistan will take place on June 2nd, 2023 at Mahinda Rajapaksa International Stadium, Hambantota.
Match Details to Note
Match: Sri Lanka vs Afghanistan, 1st ODI, Afghanistan tour of Sri Lanka, 2023
Date: June 02, 2023 (Friday)
Time: 10:00 AM IST
Venue: Mahinda Rajapaksa International Stadium, Hambantota
Dasun Shanaka’s bench strength will be put to the test in this series ahead of the ICC World Cup. They have lost back-to-back series against India and New Zealand. The team has struggled to find the right combination, so this series is crucial for them. They must play to their strengths and take advantage of the home advantage to take an early lead in the series.
Pathum Nissanka is the team’s key batsman, and he will look to get the innings started with Kusal Mendis. Angelo Mathews must bring his experience to the middle order alongside Charith Asalanka and Shanaka. Chamika Karunaratne, Dhananjaya de Silva, and Wanindu Hasaranga will need to contribute in the lower middle order.
Early spells from Kasun Rajitha and Dushmantha Chameera will be crucial against a hard-hitting batting line-up. Matheesha Pathirana arrives with a strong IPL record, and he will need to perform well alongside Wanindu Hasaranga. This attack is bolstered by Karunaratne, Dhananjaya de Silva, and Shanaka.
Dasun Shanaka (c), Pathum Nissanka, Dimuth Karunaratne, Kusal Mendis (wk), Angelo Mathews, Charith Asalanka, Dhananjaya De Silva, Sadeera Samarawickrama (wk), Chamika Karunaratne, Dushan Hemantha, Wanindu Hasaranga, Lahiru Kumara, Dushmantha Chameera, Kasun Rajitha, Matheesha Pathirana, Maheesh Theekshana
Players to watch out for:
The 25-year-old right-handed opener has a century in both ODI and Test cricket, with his best score in the latter coming last year against a very strong Australian side.
The skipper was a member of the Gujarat Titans squad in the 2023 IPL but only appeared in three games. He’ll be eager to demonstrate to the cricketing world what the Titans missed out on in this game.
The 29-year-old did not play an ODI from the end of July 2019 to the end of July 2021, but he has only gone wicketless once in his 18-match career.
Possible Playing XI:
Dasun Shanaka (c), Pathum Nissanka, Kusal Mendis (wk), Angelo Mathews, Dhananjaya de Silva, Charith Asalanka, Wanindu Hasaranga, Chamika Karunaratne, Kasun Rajitha, Matheesha Pathirana, Dushmantha Chameera
Hashmatullah Shahidi and his team will look to get things moving after a long break. They had leveled the previous ODI series against Sri Lanka, and the team will look to build on that success. Their opponents are difficult to beat at home, and Shahidi will appreciate a strong performance from his players.
In this game, openers Rahmanullah Gurbaz and Ibrahim Zadran will look to establish a strong opening wicket stand. The middle order has gained experience, and they will be looking for a strong performance from Rahmat Shah, Shahidi, and Najibullah Zadran. In the lower middle order, Mohammad Nabi, Rashid Khan, and Azmatullah Omarzai add firepower.
Mujeeb ur Rahman and Fazalhaq Farooqi will look for early wickets and put the hosts under pressure early on. Rashid Khan and Noor Ahmed performed admirably in the IPL and will be confident. Azmatullah Omarzai and Mohammad Nabi will compete for supporting roles.
Hashmatullah Shahidi (c), Rahmat Shah, Rahmanullah Gurbaz (wk), Ibrahim Zadran, Riaz Hassan, Najibullah Zadran, Mohammad Nabi, Azmatullah Omarzai, Rashid Khan, Mujeeb Ur Rahman, Noor Ahmad, Abdul Rahman, Fazalhaq Farooqi, Fareed Ahmad Malik, Ikram Alikhil
Players to watch out for:
This will be the 21-year-old’s ninth ODI, and he has already scored three centuries in this format.
The seasoned all-rounder has a century and four four-wicket hauls in his ODI career. At this venue, he will receive assistance with his off-spin.
The 22-year-old left-arm pace bowler played only four matches for Sunrisers Hyderabad in the 2023 IPL. In ten ODIs, he has 17 wickets.
Possible Playing XI:
Hashmatullah Shahidi (c), Rashid Khan, Mujib ur Rahman, Rahmanullah Gurbaz (wk), Ibrahim Zadran, Rahmat Shah, Mohammad Nabi, Fazalhaq Farooqi, Najibullah Zadran, Noor Ahmed, Azmatullah Omarzai
Sri Lanka vs Afghanistan Batsmen Worth Watching
With the bat, we support Pathum Nissanka, Angelo Mathews, and Kusal Mendis for Sri Lanka. Mathews has a wealth of experience, having scored 18 international centuries, three of which have come in this format. Mendis has a best ODI score of 119.
Our batting picks for Afghanistan are Ibrahim Zadran, Rahmat Shah, and Rahmanullah Gurbaz. Shah has over 3000 ODI runs in his career and has an average of 51.10 in his last 10 ODI innings. Gurbaz has only played 15 One-Day Internationals, but he has already scored three hundreds and two half-centuries.
Sri Lanka vs Afghanistan Bowlers Worth Watching
Our bowling picks for Sri Lanka are Kasun Rajitha, Matheesha Pathirana, and Dushmantha Chameera. Chameera has over 100 international wickets to his name, with the best figures in this format being 5-16. Pathirana dismissed Sai Sudharsan and Rashid Khan in the IPL final on Monday.
Noor Ahmad, Mujeeb Ur Rahman, and Fazalhaq Farooqi are our picks for Afghanistan’s top bowlers. At the age of 22, Ur Rahman has the best ODI figures of 5-50 and 79 wickets in this format. Ahmad, who impressed in the IPL, should get plenty of turn from this pitch.
Sri Lanka vs Afghanistan Head to Head
Although Sri Lanka leads the overall head-to-head series 4-2, both teams have won two of the last five meetings. Sri Lanka won the previous match by four wickets.
Sri Lanka vs Afghanistan Head to Head Stats in ODI
Sri Lanka vs Afghanistan Toss Prediction
The wicket at this venue is absolutely stunning to bat on, and we’ve seen teams put up big totals. In the early overs, the ball will not move. The team that wins the toss should not be afraid to bat first.
Sri Lanka vs Afghanistan Pitch Report
The wicket at the Mahinda Rajapaksa International Stadium in Hambantota is a batsman’s paradise because the ball comes onto the bat nicely. With no assistance, it is one of the most difficult wickets for fast bowlers. Spinners who turn the ball can take advantage of the surface’s slowness and have done well in the past.
Over Hambantota, the sky would be partly cloudy. In the afternoon, the weather would be hot and humid. We anticipate a good batting surface on which batsmen can play their shots without fear, with little in it for bowlers. To win here, the team batting first would need to score more than 320 runs.
Sri Lanka vs Afghanistan Prediction
Afghanistan has a strong team, but they haven’t played in this format in over a year. Their batters will need to perform well and build their innings. Sri Lanka has been difficult to beat at home and has a bowling attack that is well-suited to these conditions. It will make them the game’s favorites. Check out the odds at Cricbaba!
Sri Lanka is the favourite to beat Afghanistan at the odds of 1.50.
Sri Lanka vs Afghanistan Most Recommended Player for Bet:
Pathum Nissanka has become an essential part of Sri Lanka’s top order in all formats, and he is our pick to be the team’s leading run scorer in this game.