Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Sri Lanka vs Pakistan 1st ODI 2009: Preview and Live Score

Sri Lanka is going to play against Pakistan in the first one-day international cricket match on 30 July, Thursday. The match is going to be a day match and it is not welcome news for every one because it is time of hot weather in Sri Lanka. So, the players will not be able to play in good environment. On the other hand, it is going to take place on Thursday a working day in both Sri Lanka and Pakistan. So, the cricket crazy fans will not be able to watch most part of their matches in their television sets.

The match is going to take place at the Rangiri Dambulla International Stadium and let me tell you something about it first. The stadium has sitting capacity of more than 16,000. It has also floodlight. Dambulla International cricket Stadium was built in 2000 and the first match took place in March 2000 was between England and Sri Lanka. The pitch is considered to be good for bowlers and fast bowlers get more benefit in morning time while in the afternoon it is the spinners to get more support from the pitch.

You know that Sri Lanka and Pakistan just finished playing a test series and in this test series, three matches were played in which Sri Lanka won the first two and the third was a draw. In fact, in the third test match, Pakistan was lucky that they could draw it because at one time it looked that they could loss it. Thus, Pakistan was very lucky to get saved from a total white wash in a test series. Of course, one-day international is a different ball game compared to test matches. Anything can happen in an ODI match and it is very unpredictable.

Although, Pakistan suffered humiliating defeat in the test series, their captain is very optimistic that they would much perform better in their ODI. In fact, Pakistan is confident that they can win the ODI series because they have some good players. In fact, the good part for them is that some fresh and new players are going to take part in the ODI series. First of all, I have to talk about the Shahid Afridi, who decided not to play in the test series. He was the top player in ICC World Twenty20 2009. Then there is Rana Naved and Imran Nazir who are going to make into the national team after a long absence because of their playing in Indian Cricket League or ICL. These three players are in fresh mood and they can really improve the performance of the team.

I would like to talk more about Shahid Afridi because it seems that 2009 is the year of Afridi. In April, he played against Australia in Dubai and his performance was best for his team. In fact, in that series he was in top form and among all the Pakistani players, Afridi performed consistently in the series against Australia. The same can be said in World Twenty20 Cup. He was the key man behind the success of his team. I hope that you remember that Pakistan became champion of World Cup Twenty20 2009 and in the final match they defeated Sri Lanka. Shahid Afridi was man of the match in semi-final and final matches in Twenty20 World Cup and it shows that what kind of form he is. Another player that Pakistan is hoping a lot is Umar Akmal who is the brother of Kamran Akmal. Umar Akmal is a very young player and he is only 19-year old but on this Monday, he scored 101 runs against Sri Lanka A in a warm-up match. So, there is a lot of expectation from Umar Akmal too.

Sri Lankan players are also very confident. They are in good form in 2009. They demolished Pakistan in the test series as I just stated earlier. And all their players are in good form. Sri Lanka has a very talented and they are consistently performing well since their world cup triumph in 1996.

However, I think that Sri Lanka will miss Chaminda Vaas. Chaminda Vaas recently retired from test cricket but he said that he wanted to play ODI matches for another two years. However, Sri Lankan selector did not think that Vaas was an experienced and good player now and they did not select him. I think that it is a big mistake and they should not have done it. Chaminda Vaas has been the main fast bowler for many years for Sri Lankan team and they should have picked him. However, Sri Lankan fans will surely miss Tillakaratne Dilshan more than Chaminda Vaas. Dilshan was in superb form in Twenty20 World Cup 2009 but he is suffering from a bad injury that he got in the third test.

I am afraid that rain can play very important fact in the match because at this moment in South Asia it is time of rainy season.

So, who do you think will win the match? I think that Pakistan has better chance because they have got some fresh players and Afridi is in superb form in this year. Pakistan cricket board has also acted very smartly by bringing back quality players like Rana Naved and Imran Nazir. Both of them are good for shorter version of cricket.

Live Score:

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