We have opted for a fantasy cricket team based on the recent performances, overall impact, and credit points.
Pitch Report for Sri Lanka vs Afghanistan Super 4 Match
1st innings average score: 151
2nd innings average score: 122
Type: Pitch has been getting better for batters. Spinners otherwise have dominated.
Time: September 3, 7:30 PM IST
Probable Playing XI Sri Lanka & Afghanistan
Probable XI for Sri Lanka: Danushka Gunathilaka, Pathum Nissanka, Kusal Mendis (wk), Charith Asalanka, Bhanuka Rajapaksa, Dasun Shanaka (c), Wanindu Hasaranga, Chamika Karunaratne, Maheesh Theekshana, Asitha Fernando, Dilshan Madushanka
Probable XI for Afghanistan: Hazratullah Zazai, Rahmanullah Gurbaz (wk), Ibrahim Zadran, Najibullah Zadran, Karim Janat, Mohammad Nabi (c), Rashid Khan, Azmatullah Omarzai, Naveen-ul-Haq, Mujeeb Ur Rahman, Fazalhaq Farooqi
Games Changers for the Match
In 2022, Dasun Shanaka has hammered 353 runs at an average of 72. Of late, he has been finishing things off in style for Sri Lanka time and again. He may not have chipped in with the ball as much, but his medium pacers have broken partnerships in the past.
Ahead of the Asia Cup, Wanindu Hasaranga had blasted 99 runs at a strike rate of 162 and scalped three wickets in Sri Lanka T20 League. Although he hasn’t contributed with the bat in the ongoing tournament, he has been the most effective bowler for Sri Lanka.
Smart Fantasy Picks
Hazratullah Zazai has not really got going as he is expected to, but the scores of 37* and 23 have kept fantasy players happy. However, Sri Lanka’s bowling seems to lack teeth and the shorter boundaries at Sharjah will entice Zazai to bat freely. After all, his highest score in T20Is read 162* off 62 balls.
Rahmanullah Gurbaz and Ibrahim Zadran have provided 30-run bonus fantasy points once in two games thus far. They have looked comfortable even on the sluggish wickets of the UAE this season. More importantly, both are good players of spin.
With two wickets and scores of 31 and 16, Chamika Karunaratne has been making fantasy cricket interesting. He can do both, that is, provide breakthroughs with the ball and pack a punch with the bat. He is also one of Sri Lanka’s safest fielders.
Bhanuka Rajapaksa’s brand of cricket may not breed consistency, but his strike rate often makes a difference in fantasy sports. Above all, he looked in great touch in the first game against Afghanistan, hitting 38 off 29 including five fours and a six.
Fazalhaq Farooqi followed his three-wicket haul with a spell of 0 for 25. Either way, fantasy players have benefitted. To take wickets and be economical is a rare talent.
Fantasy Power Picks
With five wickets at a strike rate of 9.6, Mujeeb Ur Rahman is the joint-highest wicket-taker of the 2022 Asia Cup. Since the Ireland tour, he has taken 11 wickets in seven T20Is, going wicketless only once. In addition to his wicket-taking ability, he provides bonus fantasy points for his economy. He is also one of the rarest bowlers to throw in a maiden over every now and then.
While Mujeeb lays the foundation in the powerplay, Rashid Khan continues the momentum in the middle overs. It was Rashid’s three-wicket haul that derailed Bangladesh earlier this week. Not to overlook Rashid’s skills with the bat down the order. He is a delight for fantasy players for a reason.
Kusal Mendis’ last five scores in competitive T20 cricket read 30, 86, 56*, 2, and 60. Although he lived a charmed life against Bangladesh, his persistence to score at a brisk rate was commendable. Anything with the gloves will be a bonus as it proved in the game against Bangladesh.
Fantasy Tip of The Day
Unlike Sri Lanka’s top-order batters, Afghanistan have been consistent in run-making, and more importantly, watchful with their shot selection. Moreover, Afghanistan’s spinners have been superior to all other teams.