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Sri Lanka T20I tour of Australia: Preview, Match Schedule, Team Squads and Series Predictions

Australian Team
Australian Team

All you need to know about the Sri Lanka T20I tour of Australia, comprising 3 T20Is.

Sri Lanka ended the 2019 World Cup at the sixth spot just behind Pakistan with three wins and four losses from nine matches. Although one never expected them to qualify for the semi-finals, it was them who brought life into the World Cup with a win over England.

The team has been on a bit of a roll since then as they first clean swept Bangladesh by 3-0 right after the World Cup, registering victories by comprehensive margins of 91 runs, 7 wickets and 122 runs in the three games respectively.

They then faced New Zealand at home. After leveling the Test series 1-1, even though they lost the T20I series 2-1, the team made a notable come back in the last match and beat New Zealand by a big margin of 37 runs.

Their next series was the much talked about tour of Pakistan where they swept the hosts off their feet with a 3-0 victory in the T20Is in the absence of their leading players.

Sri Lanka will not have happy memories of their last Test tour of Australia this year itself in January when they were beaten comprehensively by the side. The margins were an innings and 140 runs in the first Test and 366 runs in the next one.

Interestingly, their last T20I assignment Down Under was a successful one as the team beat the Aussies 2-1. Sri Lanka have a couple of young players who are coming up the ranks quite nicely, including Danushka Gunathilaka, who impressed with a ton in the 3rd ODI against Pakistan.

Avishka Fernando, who is the next big thing in Sri Lankan cricket, will be complemented by the relatively experienced batsmen Kusal Perera and Kusal Mendis, with wicketkeeper Niroshan Dickwella being their x-factor. Shehan Jayasuriya has risen as a quality all-rounder in recent times. Skipper Lasith Malinga will remain their biggest strength.

But even with all their might, they may fall short of Australia by a considerable margin. The return of David Warner and Steven Smith to the T20I fold is one of the biggest draws of the series.

"We are delighted to welcome Steve Smith and David Warner back into the Twenty20 International fold. Steve is a world-class batsman in all formats, while Warner is Australia's highest ever T20I runs-scorer. He was also the leading runs-scorer at this year's Indian Premier League with Sunrisers Hyderabad," Trevor Hohns, the national Australian selector, said. 

The hosts are back to their full strength after a long time with all their top batsmen and bowlers available. Australia beat India 2-0 in their last T20I series.

Here are the predictions for the series:

Winner - Australia (2-1)

Top Run Scorer - Aaron Finch

Most sixes - Glenn Maxwell

Top Wicket Taker - Lasith Malinga

Let's have a look at the squads of both teams:

Australia- Aaron Finch (c), Ashton Agar, Alex Carey, Pat Cummins, Glenn Maxwell, Ben McDermott, Kane Richardson, Steve Smith, Billy Stanlake, Mitchell Starc, Ashton Turner, Andrew Tye, David Warner, Adam Zampa

Sri Lanka- Lasith Malinga (c), Kusal Perera, Kusal Mendis, Danushka Gunathilaka, Avishka Fernando, Niroshan Dickwella, Dasun Shanaka, Shehan Jayasuriya, Bhanuka Rajapaksa, Oshada Fernando, Wanindu Hasaranga, Lakshan Sandakan, Nuwan Pradeep, Lahiru Kumara, Isuru Udana, Kasun Rajitha

Let's have a look at the schedule (local time) of the series:

 First T20: Sun Oct 27, Adelaide Oval, 2.30pm

Second T20: Wed Oct 30, Gabba, 7.10pm

Third T20: Fri Nov 1, MCG, 7.10pm

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