England will clash with Sri Lanka in the first T20I of the three-match series at Sophia Garden Cricket Ground in Cardiff on Wednesday.
Eoin Morgan & Co. are placed at the top of the International Cricket Council (ICC) T20I Rankings with 277 ratings, whereas Sri Lanka have occupied the eighth spot with 227 ratings.
England lost their last T20I series against India 2-3 and would be looking to stand tall to their numero-uno position in the T20I rankings. On the other hand, the Islanders lost their last T20I series against West Indies 1-2 in an away tour. However, with the crowning of Kusal Perera as the skipper, the Lankans would have found an energetic leader and try to dominate the series.
Played: 9 | England: 5 | Sri Lanka: 4 | N/R: 0
Played: 4 | England: 1 | Sri Lanka: 3 | Draw: 0
The pitch at Cardiff is a bit erratic as it features the highest score of 182 by England against Australia and a substantially different low score of below 100 by Pakistan.
Four out of the last six games have gone in favour of the chasing team. The weather analysts predict that there are chances of a slight drizzle with overcast conditions which can help swing bowlers.
Injuries have plagued the Three Lions, and their prominent players like Ben Stokes and Jofra Archer were ruled out. The English dealt with another blow when recently, their wicket-keeper batter Jonny Bairstow suffered an ankle wound during the T20 Blast 2021.
The Eoin Morgan-led side is expected to go with three pacers and two spinners. The main spot of contention could be between Tom Curran and Chris Jordan.
England: Jason Roy, Jos Buttler (wk), Jonny Bairstow/Sam Billings, Dawid Malan, Eoin Morgan (c), Liam Livingstone, Moeen Ali, Sam Curran, Tom Curran/Chris Jordan, Adil Rashid, Mark Wood
Sri Lanka would be playing their first T20I under the new captain. With senior players still missing, the youngsters have a good chance to prove their mettle, cement their place in the side and get to a stable playing XI combination.
Sri Lanka: Danushka Gunathilaka, Avishka Fernando, Kusal Perera (c & wk), Kusal Mendis, Oshada Fernando/Pathum Nissanka, Dasun Shanaka, Wanindu Hasaranga, Isuru Udana, Akila Dananjaya, Dushmantha Chameera, Nuwan Pradeep
- England wins the toss and bowls first
- Powerplay score: 30-35
- Sri Lanka total: 150-155
- Sri Lanka wins the toss and bowls first
- Powerplay score: 40-45
- England total: 160-165
England to win the match.