***1st One Day International between Sri Lanka and England cancelled due to rain.***
Our event of the day is the 1st One Day International between Sri Lanka and England at the Rangiri Dambulla International Stadium. The match opens a 5-match ODI series between the two sides, which will be followed by a Test Match series next month. England look to continue their dominant ODI performance as they face a struggling Sri Lankan team. Maintaining a strong ODI presence is particularly important to England, as they look ahead to the 2019 Cricket World Cup, which they will be hosting. England come into the series as the favourites, and as the top-ranked 50-over team in international cricket. Expect an electric day of international cricket as England looks to cement their ODI prowess and Sri Lanka push to get the team back on track. This ODI series is the tale of two very different teams. England come into the series having dominated their 2018 ODIs. They began 2018 with a 4-1 series victory against Australia in January, followed by a 3-2 victory against New Zealand in March. Their only series loss of the year came in a one-off match against Scotland in June. However, even in that loss, they only fell agonisingly short by just 6 runs. Later that month they rallied to sweep Australia 5-0. In this series, they set a 50-over record for runs scored, hitting 481 runs on June 19th. Their final ODI series prior to Sri Lanka ended as a 2-1 victory over India.
Sri Lanka, on the other hand, started well but declined as the year went by. They won the Bangladesh Tri-Nations Series in January, overcoming Bangladesh and Zimbabwe to a take a hard-fought tournament victory. However, they went on to lose 3-2 in a 5-game series against South Africa in August followed by a group stage exit from the Asia Cup in September. Following the Asia Cup loss, Sri Lanka dismissed their captain, Angelo Matthews. New captain Dinesh Chandimal has vowed to rebuild the team and shore up their weaknesses as the team looks ahead to next year’s World Cup. Today should be an exciting start to the series.
Honourable mentions around the globe go to day 4 of the ATP Rolex Shanghai Masters. The first round concluded yesterday, with Pablo Carreño Busta becoming the 4th seeded player to leave the competition in the first round. Number 6 seed, Dominic Thiem was also upset, losing his second round match yesterday to Matthew Ebden, as was number 5 seed Marin Čilić, who lost to Nicolás Jarry. A number of the top of seeds are in action today as the second round continues. Number 3 seed Juan Martin Del Porto faces Richard Gasquet, best known for his long groundstrokes and powerful one-handed backhand. Top seed, and defending tournament champion, Roger Federer, plays Daniil Medvedev. Number 11 seed Kyle Edmund faces Andreas Seppi. We are sure to see some memorable tennis today. Elsewhere, in the NHL, there is a rematch of the 2018 Stanley Cup as the Washington Capitals host the Las Vegas Golden Knights at the Capital One Arena. The 2018 Youth Olympics continue in Buenos Aires. In NPB, the Chiba Lotte Marines look to end a 3-game losing streak as they face the Hokkaido Nippon-Ham Fighters at the Sapporo Dome.
Whatever you’re watching, enjoy!
Photos by England Cricket; Sri Lanka Cricket
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