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Sri Lanka v Australia IV ODI, Dambulla -- Preview

Visitor sets sights on series-winning lead as host comes to terms with Dilshan’s retirement

Sri Lanka v Australia IV ODI, Dambulla -- Preview - Cricket News
Already up 2-1, Australia will look to seal the series in the fourth encounter.
Australia will look to seal the One-Day International series when it takes on Sri Lanka in the fourth game in Dambulla on Wednesday (August 31).
The visitor leads the five-match series 2-1 and another win will be a huge morale boost after a disastrous Test series, where it was swept 3-0.
Unlike the Test series, the ODIs have been hard-fought and competitive, with both teams landing punches alternately. The series was level after the first two games in Colombo before Australia went ahead with a narrow, thrilling win in the first of the two games in Dambulla. 
The fourth ODI will see forced changes in both squads for different reasons. While it will be Sri Lanka's first match in the post Tillakaratne Dilshan era, Australia too suffered a blow with Shaun Marsh flying back home with a broken finger.
Marsh managed just one run in Australia's two-wicket win in the previous game - the only match he played this series. However, it was the fourth instance of an Australian player heading home mid-way through the tour. Mitchell Marsh, Shaun’s younger brother, and Steven Smith, the captain have both been rested, while Nathan Coulter-Nile returned home with a back injury.

Despite the number of changes, Australia has coped well with David Warner, the new captain, beginning on a winning note in his first match as international captain. What Australia will want, though, is more runs from him. Warner has managed just 19 runs in the series and will have to lift his game in Wednesday's crucial encounter.
The positive for the visitor is that the other senior batsmen have stepped up. George Bailey's 99-ball 70 steered it home in a tricky chase in the third match while Matthew Wade and Aaron Finch too have been among the runs. On the bowling front, the ever-reliable Mitchell Starc has continued from where he left in the Tests and has found good support in James Faulkner and Adam Zampa, the legspinner.
The go-to man for Sri Lanka in the ODIs has been Dinesh Chandimal, who is in the form of his life with scores of 80*, 48 and 102 in the three games. One of the finds of the Test series, Kusal Mendis, has also made two half-centuries but Sri Lanka will seek a more combined effort from its batsmen. The host has managed to score more than 230 only once and was particularly disappointing in the last game, where it was skittled for 226 despite Chandimal's brilliant ton.
It will also have to quickly adjust to Dilshan's retirement from the format. Kusal Perera, who slipped down to the middle order after opening in the first game, could return to the top while Milinda Siriwardana, who was dropped after only one game, is expected to return to the middle order. 
Australia is a win away from a tour-redeeming series victory. Whether it can change the pattern of the series, where no team has won two games in a row thus far, remains to be seen.
Teams (from):
Sri Lanka: Angelo Mathews (capt), Dinesh Chandimal (wk), Kusal Perera, Kusal Mendis, Dhananjaya de Silva, Lahiru Kumara, Avishka Fernando, Danushka Gunathilaka, Angelo Perera, Suranga Lakmal, Thisara Perera, Dilruwan Perera, Seekkuge Prasanna, Lakshan Sandakan and Amila Aponso.
Australia: David Warner (capt), George Bailey, James Faulkner, Aaron Finch, Josh Hazlewood, Moises Henriques, Usman Khawaja, Travis Head, Nathan Lyon, Mitchell Starc, Matthew Wade (wk), Adam Zampa.

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