Sri Lanka have been the most impressive side in Group 1 of the World T20 by a country mile, and the 2012 finalists will look to continue their dominance when they face off against England in Chittagong on Thursday evening.
[Read the report HERE]
England saw their chances of opening with a victory in the T20 World Cup cut short by rain, with New Zealand picking up a win courtesy the Duckworth/Lewis method, despite only playing a little over five overs in their innings.
Stuart Broad felt hard done by that result, but the only way England can recover from the disappointment is by topping Sri Lanka.
"It is a must-win game for us," England batsman Ravi Bopara said. "I don't think we know the mathematical side of it -- we have to win. Winning against Sri Lanka would be a big thing for us, a big confidence boost and that's how we're looking at it."
England will still be in with a chance, albeit a slight win, if they lose to Sri Lanka on Thursday. However, in order to avoid that desperate feeling, the England batsmen will have to find a way to get their batting mojo working, especially against a potent Sri Lanka attack filled with effective pacers and dangerous spinners.
"It's more of a mindset is T20," England bowlers Tim Bresnan said. "We certainly have the power players, we have everything in the armoury to win games of cricket. We just can't put our finger on why we've not been able to piece together a good performance.
"We've been playing six weeks of T20. It's been good, we've gelled as a team. I think we're still confident in the dressing room despite not winning many games. I think we all realise we need that win to kick us off, and we'll be off and running."
Sri Lanka will be virtually in the semifinals with a victory over England, and after winning their first two matches, skipper Dinesh Chandimal said he would resist making any changes to the lineup, chiefly adding another spinner to the team with England being well-known strugglers against the slower bowlers.
The Mirpur pitch, where teams from Group 2 are playing, has aided the spinners quite a bit, but the strip in Chittagong has been much more even for both sets of bowlers. "These wickets are totally different to Dhaka," Chandimal said on Wednesday. "There was a lot of grass on the pitch in the last four or five games and there is a little bit of seam for the fast bowlers so we cannot go with more than two [specialist] spinners in these conditions.
"All the players in the squad are fit but we have not yet taken a decision on the final eleven. We need to assess the conditions tomorrow night and then decide on our best 11."
Where to Watch Live:
World T20 2014: England vs Sri Lanka Live TV and Streaming Information (Match starts 7.30 pm local time, 7 pm IST, 9.30 am ET, 1.30 pm GMT)
|India||Star Sports 1, Star Sports 3, Star Sports HD1|
|US and Latin America||ESPN|
|UK and Ireland||Sky Sports|
|Middle East and North Africa||OSN Sport Cricket|
|Sub Saharan Africa & South Africa||SuperSport|
|New Zealand||Sky Sport|
|Pakistan||PTV and Ten Sports|
|Bangladesh||Bangladesh TV, Maasranga TV and Gazi TV|
|Country||Live Streaming links|
|Canada||HERE or HERE|
|South Africa & Sub Saharan Africa||HERE|
|Pakistan||HERE or HERE|
Team news: England: Ian Bell missed training on Wednesday due to a stomach upset, but the batsman has not featured since linking up with the squad following an injury to Joe Root, and was not expected to play against Sri Lanka. England might consider a change or two in their bowling lineup, but with the pitch having some pace in it, it is unlikely that Broad will choose to bring in an extra spinner.
Sri Lanka: Kusal Perera received a nasty blow on his finger in the first ball against the Netherlands, but the injury is not thought to be serious enough to keep the opener out of contention. Ajantha Mendis was at his bamboozling best against the Dutch, and is expected to keep his place, meaning another match on the bench for the experienced Rangana Herath.
Expected lineups: England: Alex Hales, Michael Lumb, Moeen Ali, Eoin Morgan, Jos Buttler, Ravi Bopara, Chris Jordan, Tim Bresnan, Stuart Broad (capt), James Tredwell, Jade Dernbach.
Sri Lanka: Kusal Perera, Tillakaratne Dilshan, Mahela Jayawardene, Kumar Sangakkara, Dinesh Chandimal (capt), Angelo Mathews, Thisara Perera, Nuwan Kulasekara, Sachitra Senanayake, Lasith Malinga, Ajantha Mendis.