Time: 9:00 am IST
Date: 18th March
Venue: Sydney Cricket Ground, Sydney
After experiencing a roller coaster ride in the group stages, the World Cup takes a steep turn as it heads towards the exciting quarter final stage. Familiar foes South Africa and Sri Lanka lock horns in the first encounter and this surely promises to be a cracker of a contest.
Both sides are even Stevens with respect to their group stage fortunes, managing to pick up four wins from the six games played. But Sri Lanka finished 3rd in group A, one place below their African counterparts in the other group, owing to stiffer competition.
The Sri Lankan lions have been there and done it all. This phase of the tournament has always been fruitful for them and they invariably find a way to make it to the summit every time over the last 2 editions. The way they raise their game in the knockout rounds goes to show you the quality of the side. Sangakkara, the man or should I say the ‘legend’ in form has been instrumental in their group stage encounters notching up over 450+ runs. Add four back to back centuries to top it all and you will end up wondering why he chose to retire at a time like this. Other stalwarts like Dilshan and Mahela also seem to be in good touch much to Sri Lanka’s benefit. It is their bowling however that seems to have let them down. The islanders have scored big and struggled to defend their totals which is exactly the area that South Africa will look to target.
Hailed as sure shot contenders for the grand trophy, South Africa began their campaign well thrashing the minnows and the West Indies with ease. But it was their dismal losses to India and Pakistan that will pretty much dent their confidence. Blessed with match winners in all facets, the Proteas will still remain one of the favorites to lift their maiden world cup. But, if they get complacent and ‘choke’ once again like they always do, it will be curtains for De Villiers and his band of men.
X Factor – Overdependence on certain stars pretty much summarizes the fortunes of both teams. The contest can be aptly called Sangakkara and DeVilliers owing to the immense contribution and bandwidth both men give to their national sides. If they get out cheaply, then the pressure immensely rises for either outfit and hence this is sort of an acid test for both these stalwarts.
The ICC World Cup Match will be shown live on Star Sports 1 and Star Sports HD 1, while the live-streaming will be available on Starsports.com in the sub-continent.
Those in the UK can see it live on Sky Sports 2 which has been telecasting as Sky Sports World Cup. For live streaming, they can access Sky Go.
Live Score: www.icc-cricket.com
South Africa: Hashim Amla, Quinton de Kock (wk), Faf du Plessis, AB de Villiers (capt), David Miller, Rilee Rossouw, JP Duminy, Vernon Philander, Dale Steyn, Morne Morkel, Imran Tahir, Farhaan Behardien, Kyle Abbott, Aaron Phangiso, Wayne Parnell.
Sri Lanka: Tillakaratne Dilshan, Lahiru Thirimanne, Kumar Sangakkara (wk), Mahela Jayawardene, Angelo Mathews (capt), Kusal Perera, Thisara Perera, Seekkuge Prasanna, Nuwan Kulasekara, Lasith Malinga, Dushmantha Chameera, Upul Tharanga, Sachithra Senanayake, Suranga Lakmal.