England return to T20 action this weekend as they meet in the first of three tests against Sri Lanka. It promises to be an exciting series between the two countries, with both nations hoping to come out on top.
The opening match between England and Sri Lanka gets underway on Wednesday at Sophia Gardens. England come into the T20 series off the back of an eight wicket defeat against New Zealand to bring a close to their two-match series.
England haven’t fared well in the short form games over the past couple of months, as they have come against India in both ODI and T20 competition. The most recent was in their ODI series, which was eventually won 2-1 by India. England fought well to get back onto terms in that series, but eventually were beaten by seven runs in the third and final match.
England are fell against India in T20 action in March, as India came from 2-1 down to win the series in the final match. The hosts opted to allow India to bat first in the fifth and final game of the series, but the bowlers struggled to take the wickets. India scored 224/2 over the 20 overs, with the only wickets being taken by Ben Stokes and Adil Rashid. England could only score 188 in response, but lost eight wickets over the course of the 20 overs. Dawid Malan top scored for England with 68, while Jos Buttler and Sam Curran were the next best scorers with 52 and 14 respectively.
Sri Lanka were last in action in a ODI series against Bangladesh, as they were beaten 2-1. They lost both of the opening two matches of the series, before salvaging some pride in the third and final match. Sri Lanka opted to bat in the final ODI after winning the toss, and scored an impressive 286/6 over the 50 overs. Kusal Perera was in excellent form in that game, as he scored 120 from 122 balls.
Dhananjaya de Silva also scored 55, while Danushka Gunathilaka scored 39. Dushmantha Chameera was in excellent form with the ball in that game, as he took five wickets from the nine overs that he bowled. Ramesh Mendis took two wickets, which was also the same number as Wanindu Hasaranga. Sri Lankan fans will be hoping that the team can continue that momentum against England.
Head to Head
England and Sri Lanka have met on nine previous occasions in T20. England have won five times, while Sri Lanka have recorded four victories. The nations are also difficult to separate in ODI meetings, as both nations have recorded 36 victories, which means a 50% win rate for both England and Sri Lanka.
England vs Sri Lanka Prediction
England are the clear favourites in the BetXChange betting for the opening game. Sri Lanka were excellent against Bangladesh in their most recent international fixture, but we would hesitantly agree that the best bet is for England in the opening match of the series.