When: Sri Lanka vs India, 3rd Test, Starts August 12, 10:00 AM Local Time
Where: Pallekele International Cricket Stadium, Pallekele
What to expect: There was rain two days before the game, and it resulted in both teams cancelling their pre-game practice sessions on Friday. There could be more rain on the cards over the Test match. The pitch, which had been under covers overnight, underwent another drastic change a day before the game, with the greenish tinge slowly giving way to more brown. The ground staff used hard brushes and the mower to take away what grass there was left on the pitch. The track looks a hard one, and the toss could once again play a decisive factor.
Sri Lanka: Sri Lanka are expected to play five bowlers at Pallekele. Lahiru Thirimanne is expected to stay on the sidelines, while Dhananjaya de Silva will also be dropped to the bench. Lahiru Kumara and Vishwa Fernando are expected to play as the premier fast bowlers, while Lakshan Sandakan will replace Rangana Herath in the spin department. Lahiru Gamage could get a chance if the team decides to go in with three pacers instead of spinners. In that case, Sandakan could sit out.
Probable XI: Upul Tharanga, Dimuth Karunaratne, Kusal Mendis, Dinesh Chandimal, Angelo Mathews, Niroshan Dickwella, Dilruwan Perera, Malinda Pushpakumara, Lahiru Kumara, Vishwa Fernando, Lakshan Sandakan/Lahiru Gamage
India: India have relatively fewer headaches than Sri Lanka, but the suspension of the world’s number one allrounder and bowler, Ravindra Jadeja, would have thrown a spanner in the works. Kuldeep Yadav should come in for the left-armer. There is no change expected to the rest of the line-up, but with the series done and dusted, don’t be surprised if Kohli and Co. give the bench-warmers a chance.
Probable XI: Shikhar Dhawan, KL Rahul, Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli, Ajinkya Rahane, R Ashwin, Wriddhiman Saha, Hardik Pandya, Kuldeep Yadav, Umesh Yadav, Mohammed Shami