The final time England performed Sri Lanka in a big match opener, on the 2013 World Cup, they misplaced in embarrassing style to the match’s bottom-ranked workforce. Five years on, as they equipment up for his or her opening sport towards the similar opposition in St Lucia on Saturday, this time in a World T20, they’ll be hoping to keep away from a equivalent destiny.
This time round, the body of workers glance fairly other. Of England’s 15-strong squad, 8 didn’t play within the final World T20 in 2016, and the batter Sophia Dunkley and left-arm spinners Kirstie Gordon and Linsey Smith have by no means worn an England blouse.
In specific, England will really feel the lack of their world-class wicketkeeper Sarah Taylor, who’s staying at house in an effort to set up her anxiousness situation and Katherine Brunt, the allrounder who has been dominated out the match after scans showed a flare-up of her long-standing again downside would no longer permit her to take part.
Brunt shall be changed through the Middlesex batter Fran Wilson, who is not going to arrive in time for the outlet fit, however for the reason that the pitches in St Lucia are anticipated to swimsuit tempo, Brunt’s departure is an important blow. Moreover, Taylor’s reserve, Amy Jones, could also be nearly similarly as deft however has but to turn out herself with the bat within the shortest shape, with a best rating of 30 to her identify.
England are the 50-over champions and ranked 3rd in T20, so pass into the match as solid contenders however a lot will dangle at the efficiency in their batters. In June, towards South Africa at Taunton, the world record total in women’s T20s used to be damaged two times in the similar day: girls’s T20 cricket is unexpectedly changing into a batter’s sport. England will take center from that efficiency, by which they reached 250 for 3, thank you to a 47-ball century from Tammy Beaumont. Her opening spouse Danni Wyatt has additionally flourished of overdue, having hit two T20 centuries previously 12 months and the Wisden cricketer of the 12 months, Nat Sciver, has additionally been in advantageous shape, main Surrey Stars to victory within the Kia Super League.
Given Brunt’s absence Sciver, the all-rounder who took 10 wickets within the KSL along with her medium tempo, may be most probably to play the most important position with the ball in a squad ruled through spinners. The lack of Brunt would possibly open the best way for both Gordon or Smith to make their debut, with the trainer Mark Robinson hoping his surfeit of left-arm spinners – the 19-year-old Sophie Ecclestone makes up the trio – will make up for any failings within the fast-bowling division.
“We’ve got a bit of a union going on,” Ecclestone stated. “We help each other out in training with field settings and general left-arm spinner chat.”
England are slightly lucky in that they’ve been drawn within the fairly simple Group A, along West Indies, South Africa, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh. Australia, New Zealand and India (plus Pakistan and Ireland) make up Group B, with their suits going down in Guyana. England’s greatest team problem seems to be towards the protecting champions, West Indies, who brushed aside them for 116 of their warm-up, profitable through 5 wickets.
Should England height the crowd they’re most probably to face New Zealand on the semi-final level in Antigua. While the Kiwis sit down above them within the scores, England’s utter dominance over them in the summertime, culminating in a seven-wicket win within the Tri-series last, will have to depart them assured of victory. A larger fear shall be making sure they keep away from a semi-final towards Australia and thus any probability of a repeat in their 2016 WWT20 stumble upon in India, wherein they collapsed horribly and misplaced through 5 runs.
As three-times champions and the No 1 ranked facet, Australia pose a powerful risk. With a batting lineup goodbye the Guardian’s top-rated feminine cricketer of 2018, Ellyse Perry, options handiest at No 7, it’s simple to see why they’re the favourites. Their bowling unit may be threatening, with the younger left-arm spinner Sophie Molineux, who completed as main wicket-taker of their whitewash of Pakistan final month, taking a look to make her identify all the way through the match.
All 23 suits shall be broadcast reside, with the verdict evaluation gadget in use for the primary time at a T20 World Cup. The standalone match, the primary of its type, will have to be every other step ahead for the ladies’s sport.