Sri Lanka have scored more than 300 runs in only one innings in the first Two Tests and going by that it will be another uphill task for the home batters. But they have not been able to deliver as a unit to outshine India. They have tried to beat India on a dry track.
Sri Lanka have suffered a string of injuries to key players in the series. As he held forth on the need of balancing aggression with not crossing the line of acceptable behaviour, the Indian captain said on Friday (August 11), "Firstly, we need to be very clear on what are the things that fall into it and what are the things that a player needs to keep in his mind while being on the field". The third Test match will be played at picturesque Pallekele and India go into the contest as overwhelming favourites. It might just be a good thing for those who needed more rest, especially the bowlers who have massive workload during Test matches. Kumara and Chameera have both had impressive outings on such surfaces before, and they will need to recapture that form to end India's batting dominance in this series.
The selectors will soon pick the squad for the limited-overs series. With Rangana Herath injured and other spinners not troubling the Indian batsmen, the hosts could have chosen to test the visitors with the pace of young Dushmantha Chameera and Vishwa Fernando.
On the other hand, Bhairav Shanth, the Co-founder of the event management company taking care of the match in this series, said that they wanted to try "something new". "But I haven't yet really gone in (to a Test either as captain or batsman) without looking at the wicket at least 8-10 hours before the game before this. As a team we have something up our sleeves", Chandimal said.
Kohli, the only India captain to win two Test series in Sri Lanka, has led his side to eight consecutive series wins since their 2015 triumph in the island nation. There was no training at all on the eve of the game. "So we feel absolutely comfortable going into the Test match even though we didn't practice today".
"So we certainly don't want to take anything lightly. We also thought it's good to come for tomorrow's game with a bit of a rest to the mind as well". Since the stunning knock, he has batted twice and, on both occasions, Dilruwan Perera dismissed him below 50, dismissing the destructive Indian opener at 19 in the second innings of first Test and at 35 in the second Test. As is often the case, it is hard to tell where the PR stunt ends, and where the cricket value of such an event begins.
He added that the suspension can be a good thing going forward, as it will enable players to be more aware of themselves, which will, in turn, be a welcome addition for improving their game. All the players contributed to that.