Match Preview

Sri Lanka will face Ireland in Match 8 of ICC T20 World Cup 2021 on 20 October at Sheikh Zayed Cricket Stadium, Abu Dhabi. The Lankans got off to a strong start with a seven-wicket victory over Namibia in their first match on Monday. After bowling Namibia out for 96 runs, the Islanders were led to a glorious win by Avishka Fernando and Bhanuka Rajapaksha. Ireland, on the other hand, will enter the game fresh off a seven-wicket victory over the Netherlands.

Pitch and Weather Report

The pitch is inclined more towards the bowling side and chasing would be easier.

Clear Skies with temperatures at 32 – 33° C


Total matches                                 49

Matches won batting first              22

Matches won bowling first             27

Average 1st Inns scores               138

Average 2nd Inns scores              128

Highest total recorded                   225/7 (20 Ov) by IRE vs AFG

Lowest total recorded                    87/10 (18.3 Ov) by HK vs OMAN

Highest score chased                    166/6 (19.4 Ov) by HK vs AFG

Lowest score defended                 129/6 (20 Ov) by ENG vs PAK

Top 2 Wicket-Keeper picks

1) Kusal Perera – Perera is a left-handed batter and is daring, bold, and hyper-aggressive player in the Sri Lankan batting lineup. With his short-arm jabs, pick-up hits, and square cutters, he has a tendency for big runs.

Matches – 53

Runs – 1427

Average – 27.44

2) Dinesh Chandimal – This right-handed batter is technically sound with strokes all over the wicket, and also stands out for his maturity at the crease and his ability to construct and pace an innings.

Matches – 60

Runs – 944

Average – 20.08

Top 4 Batsman Picks

1) Avishka Fernando – This right-handed batter opens for his team. From the start, he was heralded as a young prodigy who was destined for greatness. In the World Cup and subsequent fifty-over matches, he continued his upward trend with equally notable contributions for Sri Lanka’s under-19s.

Matches – 23

Runs – 303

Average – 14.42

2) Bhanuka Rajapaksa – Bhanuka, a hard-hitting left-handed middle-order batsman, made waves in 2010 when he was named the top run-getter in the under-19 World Cup. Bhanuka’s style of play ensures consistency, particularly in the longer and limited-overs format.

Matches – 11

Runs – 207

Average – 25.87

3) Paul Stirling – Stirling has drawn comparison to Jesse Ryder because of his inherent swagger and belligerence, as well as his stocky frame. He creates a lot of power with minimal effort, and he’s especially good at blasting the ball straight or dragging it over midwicket.

Matches – 90

Runs – 2525

Average – 31.17

4) Andy Balbirnie – Balbirnie is a promising middle-order right-handed batsman  who captained Ireland at the 2010 Under-19 World Cup. He is a wise pick for the upcoming match.

Matches – 55

Runs – 1117

Average – 23.27

Top 4 Bowler Picks

1) Maheesh Theekshana – The right arm off break bowler took 3 wickets in his last match against Namibia. He is on a consistent wicket streak and would definitely continue this in the upcoming match too.

Matches – 27

Wickets – 25

Economy – 5.70

2) Lahiru Kumara – Kumara is a strong-built right-arm quick bowler who can swing the ball both ways and clock good speeds. He is a product of the under-19 system.

Matches – 24

Wickets – 27

Economy – 8.02

3) Ben White – White, a tall leg spinner who bowls rapidly and flatly, was seen as a long-term alternative for Ireland to replace the wrist pin gap in the squad. He played admirably in the warm-up games.

Matches – 15

Wickets – 22

Economy – 7.32

4) Joshua Little – He can extract slight movement off the seam and relies on early swing in the air, he is surely a raw asset to an ageing Irish squad. Joshua’s future is bright if he can maintain his fitness with consistent performances over the years.

Matches – 42

Wickets – 39

Economy – 7.43

Top 2 All-rounder Picks

1) Wanidu Hasaranga – Hasaranga is an aggressive middle-order batsman who is vastly useful with his leggies. His all-around qualities could be crucial in Sri Lanka’s effort to turn things around after a string of average performances.

Matches – 66

Runs – 771

Average – 17.52

Wickets – 85

Economy – 8.49

2) Mark Adair – Mark Adair is a tall seam-bowling allrounder from Northern Ireland who debuted for Warwickshire in the first-class game. He is a seam-bowling all-rounder who had a successful career so far and is looking for more in this tournament.

Matches – 55

Runs – 447

Average – 12.77

Wickets – 78

Economy – 7.04

Predicted Playing 11


Paul Stirling, Kevin O Brien, Andrew Balbirnie (c), Gareth Delany, Harry Tector, Curtis Campher, Neil Rock (wk), Simi Singh, Mark Adair, Benjamin White, Joshua Little

 Sri Lanka

Kusal Perera (wk), Pathum Nissanka, Dinesh Chandimal, Avishka Fernando, Bhanuka Rajapaksa, Dasun Shanaka (c), Chamika Karunaratne, Wanindu Hasaranga, Dushmantha Chameera, Maheesh Theekshana, Lahiru Kumara


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Poll Winning Percentage

Sri Lanka – 51%

Ireland – 49%