The 3rd ODI will be the decider as the series is tied 1-1    ATP
The 3rd ODI will be the decider as the series is tied 1-1 ATP

An ODI series that most expected to be a one-sided affair has turned out to be a competitive and eventful one. India‘s famed batting was destructed by the Sri Lanka pacers in the opener, while Rohit ‘Hitman’ Sharma’s third double-ton in second ODI ripped apart the Lankan bowlers, giving it back to them. The third ODI, thus, can be expected to be a competitive decider. As the teams face each other at Visakhapatnam, here are some key battles which can be expected in the match.

Rohit Sharma vs Suranga Lakmal: When the giant wakes up, it destroys everything that comes its way. In this case, Rohit was that giant, who hit his second double-century against Sri Lanka, punishing each and every Lankan bowlers. However, there was one bowler whom Rohit must have loved to hit out of the ground and that is Lakmal. In a brilliant form himself, Lakmal led Sri Lanka’s bowling attack to bring down India’s batting in first ODI. He had also ended Rohit’s maiden innings as India’s ODI skipper for 2 runs. Rohit replied with hitting four sixes in a singe over.

Upul Tharanga vs Hardik Pandya: In both the ODIs, Pandya got Tharanga with the change in length. He set the Sri Lankan up nicely and allured him to drive a good length ball in the first ODI to get him out for 49. In the second, Pandya got rid of Tharanga for 7 off a short ball. Tharanga has been in good form and will want to cash in.

MS Dhoni vs Thisara Perera: Amidst the slide of wickets in the first ODI, Dhoni held his ground and stood strong and targetted Perera for the big hits. However, it was Perera only who bagged Dhoni’s wicket in both the occasions. While Dhoni managed a half-century in the first match, he was removed for 7 in the second. It was Dhoni’s payback time and he pulled off a stunner to dismiss Perera at Mohali. Will Perera be able to do a 3 on 3?

Shikhar Dhawan vs Angelo Mathews: Sri Lanka have opted to open bowling with Mathews in the first two matches and he has done well. Dhawan, who gave his wicket to Mathews for a duck in the first match, will have to face many of Mathews’ overs if Sri Lanka continue with the strategy. Also, Mathews scored a century for Sri Lanka at Mohali, while Dhawan stroked a half-century.