Earlier, For the first time in the series M.Jayawrdne won the toss and decided to bat first but they failed to get start once again from their openers as they lost S.Jayasurya in the 2nd over of their innings.
However M.Warnapura (30 runs of 44 balls) and M.Udawatte (43 runs of 55 balls) put on 77 runs for the second wicket but they lost their way after 17th over as they lost three quick wickets in space of 9 deliveries.
Sri Lanka were struggling at one stage at 133/6 in 37 overs. But thanks to T.Tushara 54 runs of 46 balls and J.Mubarak 47 runs of 55 balls which get the Sri Lankan total to 227/6 in 50 overs. Both went on to put 94 runs in just 78 balls for the seventh wicket.
Sri Lanka set 228 runs target for the Indians to chase down and make it 4-1 in the five match ODI series. India were 43/1 after 10 overs with G.Gambhir back in the pavilion.
Playing XI for both teams (Match is schedule to begin at India Time on 29th August)
The series is already over but both teams will have aim to achieve in the last ODI. Sri Lanka will look to salvage their pride with consolation win and India will aim to wrap up the series on high note by winning with 4-1 margin.
As we have seen in the last two matches played at R.Premdasa stadium the team wins the toss has some advantage while batting first since ball moves and spin more than what it does during first inning. So it will be interesting to see If India have to bat last in the 5th ODI.
With Idea Cup already in the bag it will be interesting to see what strategy M.S.Dhoni will apply in this match. For Sri Lanka it will be big match for them they are really desperate to win the last one day international, since Sri Lanka have never lost four consecutive matches on their home soil.
India has played this series without their two big guns S.Tendulkar and Virendra Sehwag and they still able to clinch the series this show how talented and confident M.S.Dhoni and his men’s are.
It will be good opportunity for Yuvraj Singh to find his form in the last game so far by his standard this series is very poor for him and he must score here if he would like to stay in the playing XI since so many youngster (V.Kohli and S.Badrinath) coming in and performing it will be very hard for Yuvraj Singh to save his place when Sehwag and Tendulkar returns to the team.
Sri Lanka will hope for their batsman to get their acts together and perform well in today’s game to end the series on high note. In the last two ODI their spin duo struggled badly as their figure suggest. M.Mralitharan conceded 104 runs and picked up only one wicket and A.Mendis went for 99 runs and picked up four wickets.
For India it was only few players who have performed consistently well in the last two one dayers M.S.Dhoni, S.Raina and Virat Kohli, but rest of the batting looks vulnerable. Likes of Gautam Gambhir and Yuvraj Singh will try to cash the opportunity in non-pressure game.
Watch out for
M Factor Vs Raina/Dhoni: So far Indian captain M.S.Dhoni and Suresh Raina played good cricket against the new born sensation A.Mendis and experienced M.Muralitharan and it will be interesting to see how Dhoni and his men tackle both if India bat last in today’s game.
Gautam Gambhir and Yuvraj Singh: Gautam Gambhir after performing well during test series has struggled to get going in one day series and big score might be around corner. Yuvraj Singh has more poor series than any other batters and he will be itching to score big run in today’s game to end the series with big score on his name.
Pitch and conditions
Toss will play another important role in today’s game. The team wins the toss will bat first on a wicket which dictates under light. Any score in excess of 250 will be winning total at R.Premdasa Stadium, Colombo.
India is unlikely to make any changes to their squad unless Dhoni tries some other options from Pathan,Patel, Ojha and R.P.Singh. On the other hand Sri Lanka might also stick with same playing XI and try to pull one back in the last game of the series.
Stats & Trivia
If India able to beat Sri Lanka in today’s game then it will be first time when Sri Lanka lost their four consecutive matches on their home soil.
S.Jayasurya needs another 42 runs to surpass S.Tendulkar records and become the highest run getter in the ODI between two countries.