Zimbabwe out to prove Sri Lanka success was not a fluke

After a terrible showing against Bangladesh Zimbabwe take on the other side in the TriNation Series, Sri Lanka on Wednesday at the Mahinda Rajapaksa International Cricket Stadium in Hambantota.

It was the last time Zimbabwe played One Day International cricket grabbing that historic 3-2 series win until this series.

It has been a long while since 10 July 2017 and Sri Lanka have made some changes to their side.

Chandika Hathurusingha resigned as Bangladesh’s coach and returned to take on the helm in his home country Sri Lanka.

Sri Lanka appointed new captains twice and Angelo Matthews resigned citing turmoil in the national game only to return ahead of this series with an eye on the 2019 World Cup.

Former captains Upul Tharanga and Thisara Perera are in the squad as well as the uncapped Shehan Madushanka.

For Hathurusingha, this will be the beginning of a rebuilding exercise.

For Zimbabwe, two days after the Monday’s catastrophe, they will return the scene of the crime on Wednesday with the belief that they could not do worse and against a side with its own problems.

Captain Graeme Cremer said the tendency for his side to take too long to get going in a tournament is a problem, something we pointed out in our preview of the Bangladesh tie but if they are to make a good tournament of the ICC Cricket World Cup Qualifier set for March in Zimbabwe, they will have to find a solution to this.

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When they choose to turn up they can be competitive but the batsmen have let the Chevrons down all too often. The murmurs around the continued employment of Lance Klusener as batting consultant while the team doesn’t seem to be improving will grow unless this changes.

It speaks volumes that a number six batsman, Malcolm Waller was the highest run maker for Zimbabwe in 2017 behind openers Solomon Mire and Hamilton Maskadza meaning batsmen three to five have all too often gone missing in matches.

First ball is bowled 8am Zimbabwe time at Dhaka’s Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium. The match is being broadcast on SuperSport to African viewers.

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