England v Sri Lanka 1st ODI: Hosts to remain unbeaten in battle at Trent Bridge with Lions
Sam Barnard, Assistant Sports Editor | June 19, 2016
England v Sri Lanka
- First One Day International of five
- Tuesday, June 21st
- Play starts: 14:00 BST
- Trent Bridge, Nottinghamshire
- Live on Sky Sports 2
England to belie woeful ODI record against Lions
Despite a dominant display over Sri Lanka in the recent three Tests, England haven’t fared well against the South Asians in ODIs having lost the last two series’ and eight of the previous 10 matches.
That makes the tourists tempting 2/1 shouts with Coral to restore some pride and win in this battle at Trent Bridge, though Eoin Morgan’s men are the heavy 2/5 favourites.
England did, however, triumph 3-2 in 2011, while three of the last four One Day series’ between the two nations have ended in that scoreline too. So, why not back the hosts at 2/1 to claim the series 3-2 again?
This is a ground which England are in fact unbeaten against the Sri Lankans on, having won in both 2002 and 2011 convincingly, the most recent of which was by a whopping 10-wicket margin.
Strong batting line-up for hosts
Alastair Cook and Craig Kieswetter were the openers that day, but now the burden has been passed onto Alex Hales and Jason Roy, who are 7/2 and 4/1 respectively to be top batsmen for their team.
Two men returning to the England set-up, after being overlooked from the Test side, are captain Morgan (6/1) and Jos Buttler (11/2), who are fresh from playing in the IPL.
It was in this series in 2014 that Lancashire’s Buttler broke the record for the fastest ever ODI hundred by an Englishmen, that he has since bettered, when he ended up firing 121 at Lord’s.
The wicketkeeper-batsman will be hoping to impress once again, as he continues an intriguing rivalry with the highly impressive Jonny Bairstow (also 11/2) for the gloves. With the duo in top form, though, it seems that there will be room for both in the XI.
As for Joe Root (3/1 favourite), he will be hoping to put a poor display by his standards in the Test series behind him, and is the subject of an enhanced Coral wincast. Odds of 5/1 say that he can be top hosts batsman in an England win.
Jordan hoping to transfer IPL form
Coach Trevor Bayliss can also rely on a strong bowling line-up, especially with Chris Jordan in high confidence being the shining light for Royal Challengers Bangalore in the 2016 IPL final, despite his side going on to lose.
Jordan showed his worth at the 2016 World Twenty20 too, and so jointly tops England’s bowling market at 7/2.
Meanwhile, Steven Finn is now fit and raring to go as he returns to the One Day set-up following injuries, and is tempting at 7/2 too.
Joining Jordan and Finn on the same odds are Yorkshire pair Adil Rashid and David Willey, as well as all-rounder Chris Woakes, who impressed when called up to the Test XI.
New wave of Lions aiming to restore pride
For Sri Lanka, Dinesh Chandimal and Angelo Mathews are always dangerous in the short forms of the game, and are respective 7/2 and 4/1 chances to be best batsmen for their team.
Missing the likes of legends such as Mahela Jayawardene, Tillakaratne Dilshan and Kumar Sangakkara, however, has left the Lions somewhat fragile in the batting order now.
With the ball, Shaminda Eranga, Nuwan Pradeep and Suranga Lakmal (all 7/2 to be best visiting bowler) represent Sri Lanka’s best chances for wickets, while Mathews (9/2) can be dangerous too.
Coral’s top tip: Buttler is hungry for success in his return to the England set-up, and so is a tempting 11/2 shout to be best batsman for the hosts.