India's assault gets Lanka thinking

Updated: 09 February 2008 08:45 IST

Kumar Sangakkara admits India's charge in the last 10 overs has forced them to rethink their strategy.

India's assault gets Lanka thinking

Sydney:

Sri Lanka will have to do some rethinking on how to bowl in the slog overs when they take on world champions Australia in the cricket tri-series here on Friday.

The islanders had India on the mat at 83 for four at one stage in their previous rain-abandoned game but conceded 105 runs in the last 10 overs to allow the opposition to put a competitive total on the board.

Lankan vice-captain Kumar Sangakkara admitted after the match that his side needed to do a bit of rethinking on how to bowl in the slog overs.

"We have something to work on to keep the scores less in the last 10 overs," he said.

The team will no doubt tighten up things in the slog overs against the hosts, who have a very strong batting line up, as any slip-ups could prove costly on a Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG) track, which was expected to favour the batsmen.

Rain in the air

The tri-series has still not seen a single match being completed as both the day-night encounters at Brisbane were abandoned because of rain and the forecast for tomorrow is also not too encouraging.

The met office has predicted partly cloudy conditions with chances of rain during the day. If rain again plays spoilsport, it will come as a huge disappointment for the fans.

After two washed out games, India find themselves on top of the points table with four points from two matches while Australia and Sri Lanka have two points each from one match.

Hayden, Clark set to return

With the first two matches of the series washed out, both sides will be keen to post their first win at the floodlit SCG.

The Australian batting will be bolstered with opener Matthew Hayden set to return to the team for the game. Paceman Stuart Clark will also be available after missing last Tuesday's clash with India for personal reasons.

Retiring wicketkeeper-batsman Adam Gilchrist dismissed concerns about the home side's fielding after more catches were spilled against India in the series opener.

"Look, as long as cricket is played, there is going to be dropped catches," Gilchrist said. "It's expected and when you don't catch them it's glaringly obvious, particularly if you set the standards we set", he said.

The Australians have also indicated that Brett Lee, who has bowled brilliantly right through the Test series against India, will be given a break at some stage and it remains to be seen whether the pace spearhead takes the field on the morrow.

Lanka's batting will largely depend on the swashbuckling Sanath Jayassuriya and the veteran batsman is capable of destroying any attack on his day.

The bowling is vastly experienced too with spin wizard Muttiah Muralitharan and Chaminda Vaas getting support from the young Lasith Malinga and Ferveez Maharoof.


Squads
Sri Lanka: Mahela Jayawardene (capt), Sanath Jayasuriya, Kumar Sangakkara, Chamara Silva, Tillakaratne Dilshan, Chamara Kapugedera, Ferveez Maharoof, Lasith Malinga, Muttiah Muralitharan, Chaminda Vaas, Upul Tharanga, Nuwan Kulasekera, Chanaka Welegedara, Ishara Amarsinghe.

Australia: Ricky Ponting (capt), Adam Gilchrist (wk), Matthew Hayden, Michael Clarke, Andrew Symonds, Michael Hussey, Brad Haddin, James Hopes, Brad Hogg, Brett Lee, Ashley Noffke, Nathan Bracken.

Hours of play: 8.45 am to 12.15 pm, 1.00 pm to 4.30 pm.



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