SA tour of SL: Sri Lanka Vs South Africa 1st Odi Live Scores, Jul 06, 2014
South Africa tour of Sri Lanka: Sri Lanka Vs South Africa 1st Odi Live Scores at Colombo, Jul 06, 2014.Match scheduled to begin at 09:45 local time (04:15 GMT)
Teams: Sri Lanka Vs South Africa
Venue: Played at R Premadasa Stadium, Colombo
Time:Match scheduled to begin at 09:45 local time (04:15 GMT)
Toss: South Africa, who chose to bat first
Last five matches result:
Sri Lanka: W W L W L
South Africa: W W W L L
Kusal Perera was out of the domestic T20 tournament with a knee injury, but news from the Sri Lanka camp suggests he will be available for the first ODI. Sri Lanka have three spinners in the squad, and if the Premadasa pitch looks like it will take turn, Rangana Herath is most likely to miss out, thanks chiefly to his importance to Sri Lanka in the Tests, and his temperamental knee injury.
The vice-captaincy seems a poisoned chalice for young Sri Lanka players. Dinesh Chandimal went through a staggeringly lean patch when burdened with it in ODIs, and now Lahiru Thirimanne may be struggling under its weight. It is an odd change of fortunes for Thirimanne, who had been instrumental to Sri Lanka's Asia Cup triumph in March, and had contributed to the World T20 campaign as well. He will hope a team without nemesis James Anderson will be an easier challenge, but in Dale Steyn, South Africa have a bowler who can do almost everything Anderson does, only faster. Thirimanne will hope to recover self-belief before the teams move to the Tests.
Imran Tahir is on his first top-level tour of Sri Lanka, and already the onus is on him to provide the bowling spark South Africa so desperately lacked in the 2013 series. Tahir has whirled his way to an average of 14.81 in nine matches elsewhere on the continent, but Sri Lanka pitches often reward different lengths and speeds than are generally useful in nearby nation. As a wrist spinner Tahir may pose a different slow-bowling challenge from those Sri Lanka see off with little fuss from most touring teams.
But South Africa are too good a team to stumble into the same pits that swallowed them during the 4-1 drubbing last year. They have arrived with good time, and clinically trounced a Board XI side featuring five players from last year's Sri Lanka squad. They will also have studied Ajantha Mendis with renewed vigour and run microscopes over Sachithra Senanayake as well. Most men in their squad have toured the island before, and if Jacques Kallis is fit, South Africa will also be at full strength, which they were not in 2013. Sri Lanka still begin as favourites, but they will not expect to stroll past the visitors so easily this time.
The hosts, though, are not just humming, they are surging. A sweep of the trophies in England has the team in predictably high spirits. Angelo Mathews said on that tour that his side is "like a family", and when Mahela Jayawardene leaps on Kumar Sangakkara's back or when Mathews and Rangana Herath place their arms tenderly around each other's waists while mulling field placements, it is not difficult to imagine they are close. This year they have defeated sides that outgunned them on paper, by dint of preparation and fighting spirit. Now they are at home, complacency appears the chief obstacle.
Pitch and conditions:
There is a chance of rain in the morning, which may help freshen up the surface and also lower the temperature during the day, if the cloud hangs around.
South Africa last played an ODI in December last year - against India, at home
South Africa have never won an ODI series in Sri Lanka. They have completed 15 ODIs in the country and lost all but two
Kumar Sangakkara is the leading ODI scorer for 2014 with 559 runs at 46.58. He has gone past the four-figure threshold thrice in the past three years