#CWC15 PREVIEW and TIPS: Bangladesh v Sri Lanka, Pool B

PREVIEW: Sri Lanka (1/4) take on Bangladesh (4/6) on Thursday at the Melbourne Cricket Ground.

201411020746_34752-620x240_1100214-WilliamHill-Sports-MainSri Lanka have not been at their best in the Cricket World Cup so far, but take on a Bangladesh side that they have beaten 32 times in 36 ODIs. There are signs too that the Lankans are starting to go up a gear.

Bangladesh will be in confident mood, albeit feeling a tad fortunate. They beat Afghanistan by 105 runs and gained a ‘bonus’ point from a washed out fixture against an Australian side that were heavily odds on to beat them.

Sri Lanka were walloped by New Zealand and got out of jail against Afghanistan thanks to Mahela Jayawardene showing all his experience with a century.

Sri Lanka are heavily reliant of Jayawardene, but also Kumar Sangakarra, Lasith Malinga and Tillakaratne Dilshan – none of whom have fired yet. In his 400th ODI we expect big things of Sangakarra and under the lights of the MCG, Malinga could get back to somewhere near his best.


Thisera Perera 16/1 to be Player of the Match

“Lasith (Malinga) is working extremely hard at the nets,” said their captain Angelo Mathews. “One has to be at the peak when the quarterfinals come, and he and the others are working towards that.”

In February last year, Sri Lanka blanked Bangladesh 3-0 in an ODI series in Bangladesh, winning each match quite comfortably. Then, in the Asia Cup clash that followed in Mirpur, Sri Lanka edged a three-wicket victory.

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We feel that Sri Lanka are improving and will be too strong for a Bangladesh side which is flattered by its current lofty status in Pool B.

Kumar Sangakarra celebrates his 400th ODI for Sri Lanka, only the fourth player to achieve the feat, and we feel he will come to the party. The headline offer of him to top score in a Sri Lankan win is worth a shot at 7/2. If you were to back Jayawardene and Sangakarra to top score in each game you’d be ahead - it’s Sanga’s turn in Melbourne to rattle the scoreboard.

The match will be played under the lights of the MCG which will aid pace and bounce and, although Malinga, is returning to form after injury, this could well be the game where he hits top gear. He is a nice price at 11/4 to be his side’s best bowler.

Thisera Perera showed in the last match he can hit down the order (46 from 27 balls) and take wickets. At 16/1 he is worth a nibble for Player of the Match.

If you like Bangladesh then 3/1 gives you value on the outrights and Shakib is a play at 14/1 as Player of the Match.

It could also be time for Tamim Igbal to score and he is our play at 9/2 to lead the Bangladeshi run stakes.

We’ve already seen a number of centuries in the Cricket World Cup and with the batting talent on display it would not be a shock to see at least one more in this game at 11/10.

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James Buttler

James has been working as a journalist and broadcaster in cricket since 2006 and was an avid fan for many years before that.
As the editor of World Cricket Badger he is intent on building the website to give quality coverage of the domestic game around the world.
He is also the presenter of the Cricket Badger Radio Show on Radio Yorkshire every Tuesday evening between 7-9pm UK time.
James was the full-time Media Manager at Yorkshire County Cricket Club between 2007 and 2010.
James is a published author, a writer/video contributor to many cricket publications and a complete cricket badger!

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