Sri Lanka need inspiration after being battered in the first four ODIs © IANS
Sri Lanka need inspiration after being battered in the first four ODIs © IANS

India and Sri Lanka face off in the fifth and final encounter of the ongoing five-match One-Day International (ODI) series at the JSCA Stadium in Ranchi on Sunday. While India aim for a 5-0 whitewash, the visitors will try and gain a consolation victory in order to obtain some pride ahead of the home series against England and the ICC World Cup 2015. Amit Banerjee explores into the possible XI that Sri Lanka might field for the final game.

Top-Order: The Sri Lankan top-order failed miserably in the fourth ODI at Kolkata, with the Kusal Perera, Dinesh Chandimal and Mahela Jayawardene falling for single-digit scores. Tillakaratne Dilshan was the only batsman to post a respectable score of 34 among the top four. The Sri Lanka team management might want to replace Perera, who fared poorly in every game that he has played so far in the series, and could make way for the untested Niroshan Dickwella.

Middle-Order: The middle-order managed to prevent a major collapse and restored some pride for Sri Lanka in the fourth ODI. Skipper  Angelo Mathews and Lahiru Thirimanne scored 75 and 59 respectively to rescue Sri Lanka from 48 for four, stitching a 118-run partnership for the fifth wicket. Thisara Perera scored 29 from as many balls. Dickwella’s inclusion in the final one-dayer could see Mathews promoted up the order.

Lower-Order/Bowling Attack: The Lankan bowlers were taken for a ride in the previous game, with Ajantha Mendis conceding 70 runs from seven overs without taking a wicket. Barring Mathews, who took two wickets for 44 runs from eight overs at a run-rate of 5.50. The fifth ODI might see Ashan Priyanjan get another opportunity, after having bowled decently in the first three ODIs, most likely in place of Seekkuge Prasanna.

Sri Lanka Likely XI: Tillakaratne Dilshan, Dinesh Chandimal (wk), Mahela Jayawardene, Angelo Mathews (c), Lahiru Thirimanne, Niroshan Dickwella, Thisara Perera, Ashan Priyanjan, Nuwan Kulasekara, Ajantha Mendis, Shaminda Eranga

(Amit Banerjee, a reporter at CricketCountry, takes keen interest in photography, travelling, technology, automobiles, food and, of course, cricket. He can be followed on Twitter via his handle @akb287)