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Another Loss For Sri Lanka
That defeat for Sri Lanka now means they’ve lost 18 of their last 20 away ODIs, and it’s difficult to see how they’re going to get out of this slump, especially seeing as they’ve lost four of their last five ODIs here at the Oval, losing both matches against England in that run.
Perhaps the only positives for this side, is both Kusal Perera and Wanindu Hasaranga managed to get half centuries, and if they can get a few others to chip in as well they might put up a bit more of a fight.
It’s difficult to see any other outcome in this ODI, and the only question is over whether Sri Lanka might give England a slightly better run for their money this time around.
Jonny Bairstow and Joe Root made the difference in the first match, scoring 69% of England’s runs between them. It was Bairstow’s strike rate of 205 that set the tone for the innings, and they’ll want a similarly bright start in this game to avoid any chance of a slip up.
Joe Root Top England Batsman
While Bairstow got the innings off to the start it needed, Root took the reins when he came to the crease and scored his first half century in 11 ODIs now.
That 79 not out will do him the world of good after some time away from the ODI side, and it’s exactly the kind of form he needs heading to the Oval where he has a strong record.
He comes in to this with back-to-back half centuries in ODI cricket at this ground and an average of 60 from nine innings. He’s third favourite to be England’s top batsman once again and he looks like the value bet.