Sri Lanka vs New Zealand – 1st Test Preview & Prediction

THE FACTS

When is Sri Lanka vs New Zealand taking place? Wednesday, August 14th, 2019 (5:30am UK time)

Where is Sri Lanka vs New Zealand taking place? Galle

What is the expected weather for Sri Lanka vs New Zealand? 26-28c with showers forecast across all five days

What channel is Sri Lanka vs New Zealand on? This match will not be televised live in the UK

Where can I stream Sri Lanka vs New Zealand? This match will not be televised live in the UK

Where can I get tickets for Sri Lanka vs New Zealand? Tickets for this match can be purchased directly from the stadium

LAST MEETING
New Zealand beat Sri Lanka by 423 runs

THE TEAM NEWS

SRI LANKA

  • Sri Lanka come into this Test series against New Zealand in good spirits in this format of the game as they beat South Africa in a two-test series back in February after recently being in the doldrums, and that 2-0 victory along with some positive results in the World Cup see them come into this home series in good shape.
  • Veterans Dinesh Chandimal and Angelo Mathews have been recalled to the squad after the former was left out of the South Africa series due to poor form and Mathews to injury, and the latter especially has a good chance of starting here after some good performances in the World Cup and recent ODI series against Bangladesh.
  • They have three spinners in their 15-man squad with Lasith Embuldeniya, Lakshan Sandakan, and Akila Dananjaya joining the all-rounder spin option of Dhananjaya de Silva and they are expected to name a spin-heavy side in Galle for this opener.

NEW ZEALAND

  • After losing out in the 50-over World Cup final, New Zealand return to action after a break in the longest format of the game and they will look to bounce back from that disappointment as the ICC World Test Championship gets under way in earnest.
  • New Zealand played Sri Lanka Board President’s XI last week and, while the match was disrupted by rain and bad light, it was a good test for them in the field as their pace bowlers toiled and left-arm spinner Ajaz Patel took 5/41, showing just how different conditions will be during this tour for them.
  • Patel did his chances of a start no harm whatsoever and the Blackcaps will choose between him, Todd Astle, Mitch Santner and Will Somerville with at least two of them likely selected as the spinners will be expected to take a huge chunk of overs given there is so little in the pitch for fast bowlers.

THE PREDICTION

The ICC World Test Championship gets under way as Sri Lanka welcome New Zealand to Galle. This promises to be an intriguing test match but much depends on which version of Sri Lanka turns up. They stunned South Africa as tourists back in February but their form prior to that series has been poor. Conditions will certainly favour them and their spinners and the Blackcaps hardly have the strongest batting line-up with the reliance of Williamson and Taylor greater than ever. The weather is expected to play a major part with heavy rain forecast across the five days, and with both teams possibly approaching this opening game in a passive mood a draw could well be on the cards if significant overs are lost.

TSZ Latest