LONDON, June 18, 2009 (AFP) – West Indies are confident of chasing nearly any total in this event; Sri Lanka believe there is no score they can’t defend. Clearly, something will have to give in their World Twenty20 semi-final. Friday’s match at the Oval sees two exciting sides up against one another and, while Sri Lanka will start favourites, the West Indies have shown that they are not to under-estimated.
Sri Lanka, who have an admirably well balanced side for cricket’s shortest format, have yet to lose a match at this tournament.
In Sanath Jayasuriya, the man for whom the phrase ‘explosive opener’ might have been created, and the inventive Tillekaratne Dilshan, who every time he plays the ‘Dilscoop’ delights spectators and infuriates opponents in equal measure, they have a first-wicket partnership that can score rapidly.
Behind them come the likes of captain and wicket-keeper Kumar Sangakkara and Mahela Jayawardene, a pair of class batsmen.
But it is their bowling attack which has really proved a problem for most of their opponents at this tournament.
For years now batsmen around the world have found that scoring quickly against off-spinner Muttiah Muralitharan is easier said than done.