Asia Cup 2018: All about Bangladesh vs Sri Lanka
Injury-hit Bangladesh will face a stern test against Sri Lanka in the Asia Cup 2018 opener. Notably, Lankans are also nursing injuries. The Tigers come from a 2-1 ODI series victory against West Indies recently and would hope to play quality cricket. Lanka will be wanting to stop Bangladesh and dominate proceedings from the start. Here's our pre-match report.
Team news: Both teams facing injury issues
Shakib Al Hasan is likely to play despite sustaining a finger injury earlier. Opening batsman Tamim Iqbal has a swollen finger and it remains to be seen whether he takes the field. Off-spinner Nazmul Hossain has a swollen bowling hand. For Sri Lanka, Danushka Gunathilaka returned home and was replaced by Shehan Jayasuriya. Dinesh Chandimal is also out with finger injury.
Fans will be hoping for a cracker of a tie
Most of the migrant workforce from these two nations in UAE could turn up for the encounter. Fans will be hoping for a cracking opener since both sides know each other in and out. Lanka may have lost the ODI series recently against South Africa, but they won the final two games and have some momentum. The small details will pay dividends.
Both teams have the required strength
Both teams look solid on paper and the experience of the senior men will come handy here. Angelo Mathews needs to lead the Lankan side from the front since this fixture would set the tone for Lankans. Also the return of Lasith Malinga is something fans would be excited about. For Bangladesh, they will turn towards veteran skipper Mashrafe Mortaza.
BAN vs SL: Key players to watch out
Injured Tamim could be a key figure for Bangladesh provided he makes it to the starting XI. The southpaw hit two tons against West Indies recently and both these games Bangladesh won. He will have the responsibility to take the game away from Lanka early on itself. For Lanka, Mathews is a strong prospect. His all-round skills could make an impact.
Conditions, timing and TV listing
The conditions are expected to be hot and humid in Dubai as per reports. This, in turn, could see the spinners play a prominent role. The match is scheduled for a 5:00 PM start (IST). One can watch the match live on the Star Sports network in both Hindi and English commentary. The match can also be streamed live on Hotstar.