Former Pakistan Test cricketer Mohammad Akram claimed before the World Cup that an Asian team would be bringing the Cup to the subcontinent. His claim has come true now that India and Sri Lanka battle it out on 2 April for what is the biggest prize in world cricket- the World Cup.
How desperately these two sides want to be the world champion will be revealed tomorrow when they go head to head with the newly renovated Wankhede Stadium.
India will as always rely on Sehwag and Tendulkar to give them a flying start. This is the perfect platform for Tendulkar to score a century and add another feather to his cap. Gambhir, Kohli and Yuvraj will be expected to score runs. Sri Lanka are good players of spin but Yuvraj has been bowling decently against every side so SL will consider him a threat. Zaheer Khan’s role becomes very important and he should play a crucial role.
It remains to be seen whether a low and slow turner is produced by the curator or whether it will be an absolute batting paradise. There are rumours that due to IPL starting very soon, Sri Lankan cricketers might be bribed into underperforming in the final.
Most people consider India to be favourites as they appear to be peaking at the right time. However Sri Lanka has historically played well against India in important games so the slightest lapse in focus of the Indians may mean that Sri Lanka is in a commanding position. India needs to watch out for Malinga’s yorkers and Murali and Mendis.
May the best team win.