Netherlands vs. Sri Lanka, World T20: Date, Time, TV Info and Preview

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Netherlands vs. Sri Lanka, World T20: Date, Time, TV Info and Preview
A.M. Ahad/Associated Press

Sri Lanka edged a tight one against South Africa in their opening game of the T20 World Cup and a win over the Netherlands will put them in pole position to qualify from their group.

Although, after their sensational victory over Ireland, it is clear that the Dutch possess some dangerous hitters and can't be taken lightly. Let's take a look at both teams ahead of this intriguing clash.

 

Venue: Chittagong, Bangladesh

Date: Monday, Mar. 24, 2014

Start time: 7:30 p.m. local time, 1:30 p.m. GMT

Weather: Hot as per usual in this part of the world but showers are also predicted by bbc.co.uk/weather throughout the day.

TV Info: Sky Sports 2 (UK)

 

Overview

Since winning the 1996 ODI World Cup Sri Lanka have been giants in the white-ball formats of cricket and with their phalanx of swash-buckling batsmen, talented youngsters and bamboozling spinners, they remain one of the favourites for this tournament.

Their opening win against South Africa was achieved despite the "big three" of Tillakaratne Dilshan, Mahela Jayawardene and Kumar Sangakkara contributing just 23 runs off 28 balls but significant knocks from the new wave of Angelo Mathews and Kusal Perera emphasised the team's strength in depth.

Some might say, the Sri Lankans weakest area is their seam attack but Lasith Malinga remains a frightening prospect for most associate nation batsmen and it's unlikely they will have faced too much slow bowling of the quality provided by Ajantha Mendis, Sachithra Senanayake and Rangana Herath either.

However, having seen the Europeans' blistering run chase against Ireland, Dinesh Chandimal's men know that they can't afford an off day against the underdogs who are sure to have the neutrals on their side.

For the Netherlands, making the Super 10s was a great cricketing achievement and despite becoming embroiled in an attention-stealing selection controversy, they will be desperate to prove they aren't just here to make up the numbers, as England found out in 2009.

And who knows, if a couple of their the in-form hitters such as Tom Cooper, Stephan Myburgh and wicketkeeper Wesley Barresi can fire then the short, fragile nature of T20 cricket is perfect for upsets.

The sides haven't met very often with their last clash in an official competition coming in the 2002 ICC Champions Trophy. The Sri Lankans triumphed on that day by the small margin of 206 runs.

 

T20 Form (latest left-to-right)

Netherlands: WLWLLWWL

Sri Lanka: WLWWWWLW

 

Squads

Netherlands 

Peter Borren (capt), Wesley Barresi, Logan van Beek, Mudassar Bukhari, Ben Cooper, Tom Cooper, Timm van der Gugten, Tom Heggelman, Vivian Kingma, Ahsan Malik, Stephan Myburgh, Michael Rippon, Pieter Seelaar, Michael Swart, Eric Szwarczynski.

Sri Lanka

Dinesh Chandimal (capt), Lasith Malinga (vice-capt), Tillakaratne Dilshan, Kusal Perera, Kumar Sangakkara (wk), Mahela Jayawardena, Lahiru Thirimanne, Angelo Mathews, Thisara Perera, Nuwan Kulasekara, Suranga Lakmal, Rangana Herath / Chaturanga De Silva, Sachithra Senanayake, Ajantha Mendis, Seekuge Prasanna.

 

Players to Watch

Tom Cooper has to be the man to watch for the Netherlands after controversially replacing the injured Tim Gruijters (see above). But the attention doesn't seem to have affected the Australian who has scored 151 runs in his last three T20 innings. Throw in the 27-year-old's useful off-breaks and the Dutch might have finally found a replacement for Ryan ten Doeschate.

Kusal Perera's innings against South Africa was the major factor in Sri Lanka winning their opening game and the aggressive opener will expect to fill his boots against an associate nation attack. The left-hander is often compared to his hero, Sanath Jayasuriya, in terms of batting style and appearance, and his recent form suggests the similarities could also extend to ability.

Who will win?

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Prediction

It is very difficult to go against the mighty Sri Lankans here who should have too much for the Netherlands in all departments and will be at home in the conditions. 

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