The India-Sri Lanka group-stage game in the 2019 ICC Cricket World Cup is going on at the Headingley Stadium in Leeds, England. Having won the toss, Sri Lanka chose to bat first and finished at 264/7, riding on Angelo Mathews’ well-made century.
The Sri Lankan all-rounder scored 113 runs in 128 balls, hitting ten fours and two sixes along the way. This was also his third ODI hundred, after having scored both his previous tons against India – once in 2014 and then in 2017.
However, here is something for Indian fans to cheer about – on both occasions where Mathews previously crossed the three-figure mark in ODIs, the Indians won the game!
The first instance happened during the 2014-15 Sri Lankan tour of India, in the 4th ODI of the series. Batting first, the Lankans scored 286/8 in 50 overs thanks to Mathews (139 not out), Lahiru Thirimanne (52), Thilakaratne Dilshan (35) and Mahela Jayawardene (32). But Virat Kohli (139), Ambati Rayudu (59), Kedhar Jadhav (20) and Axar Patel (17 not out) made sure that the Men in Blue won the match.
During the second time in 2017, it was India’s turn to bat first and Rohit Sharma completed his third ODI double hundred (208) to hand India a super-strong score of 392/4, as Shikhar Dhawan (68) and Shreyas Iyer (88) chipped in as well. In reply, no one else other than Mathews (111 not out) could bat well and the Lankans folded for 251/8.
Considering both the above situations, one might say that the Indians have the opportunity to repeat history on Saturday as well. But with Sri Lanka being a very unpredictable side, let us not place all our bets on the Men in Blue already!