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Red-hot Proteas too much for tourists? Get South Africa v Sri Lanka 1st Test tips

Faf du Plessis of South Africa (credit: RODGER BOSCH/AFP/Getty Images)

Will South Africa avoid an upset in the first Test against Sri Lanka? Read on for our predictions and betting tips for South Africa v Sri Lanka, starting Wednesday.

It has to be one of the mismatch series of the recent past. South Africa are on a surge after brushing aside Pakistan at home, while Sri Lanka continue to be in doldrums. And then, there is the hype around preparation for the ICC World Cup that puts both sides casting nervous glances.

The first of the two-Test match series will be played at Kingsmead in Durban starting from Wednesday. The visitors have gone for a last-minute change of captains, but how much of that will lift their morale is a million-dollar question!

South Africa Match Preview


The Proteas whitewashed Pakistan 3-0 in the three-match series on the back of impressive performances. Quinton de Kock (251 runs) was his usual aggressive self, while Hashim Amla (209 runs) and Aiden Markram (201 runs) looked the best of the lot.

Their bowlers had a field day against Pakistan as Duanne Olivier (24 wickets) and Kagiso Rabada (17 wickets) were ruthless throughout. With Vernon Philander and Dale Steyn just easing back into the side – making their attack one of the dreaded!

Sri Lanka Match Preview


It can’t get any worse for the Lankans, as they come here after a disastrous 2-0 loss in Australia. Niroshan Dickwella (140 runs) and Lahiru Thirimanne (115 runs) being their only batters to survive the onslaught for a brief period.

Bowling was a real shocker too, as just Suranga Lakmal (five wickets) showed a semblance of a fight. Worryingly for Sri Lanka, injuries and poor form mean they are without their first-choice bowlers including Lakmal. Even the regular captain Dinesh Chandimal is shown the door.

Match Up


Forget the batting, it is the bowling riches that South Africa boast which make them a difficult team to face at home. Considering the poor batting form they have been in on the tour of Australia, Sri Lanka have an inexperienced bowling attack, but their ability to fight will depend on their batting.

History & Statistics


  • South Africa have won six of their last eight Tests and their last six home Tests.
  • South Africa have won 14 of their 27 Tests against Sri Lanka, but have lost their last two.
  • South Africa have won 11 and lost just one of their 13 home Tests against Sri Lanka – that loss coming at this venue in 2011.
  • Sri Lanka have not lost in Durban in the two matches they played (W1, D1).

Key players


Faf du Plessis hasn’t been his flowing best in the recent series and will look to cover up here.

More often than not, Dickwella is finishing up as a saviour for the Sri Lankans with his aggressive batting down the order. The southpaw will look to play with the lines of the Proteas’ bowlers here.

Conclusion


Sri Lanka have a great record at this venue, but the current form of the side suggests they are in for a hiding. The South African bowling should once again lead their charge and the hosts are more than likely to start the series with a win.

Tips



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