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Nic Ladds 24th Sep 2009 - 11:11

Sorry England set for yet another hiding

Sri Lanka deservedly come in to this game against England as warm 2/5 favourites, while the Three Lions are 7/4 to recapture some One Day form and record a crucial win.

If England lose this game, (which they most likely will), then they are left with the prospect of having to beat both New Zealand and South Africa, two sides who are currently vastly superior to England in the one day format of the game.

It will take the most optimistic of England fans to think that they have a chance anyway after their 6-1 capitulation against Australia and the fact that Sri Lanka were brilliant with both bat and ball against South Africa in their opening game.

In that game Tillekaratne Dilshan struck another century and is unsurprisingly a warm order to top score for the Sri Lankans again at odds of 5/2 with Kumar Sangakkara next in the betting at 7/2 and for those wanting a bigger price pick Mahela Jayawardene at 9/2 appeals after his knock of 77 last time.

It is hard to pick anyone for England with confidence as many of the players' egos will have been dented by their whipping by Australia and it at 5/2 Andrew Strauss is best swerved as although he has seen it all and done it before that is a very short price for someone who is so inconsistent in ODI's.

Joe Denly has rarely put in a poor display and was more often than not amongst the top scorers in the series against Australia and the 9/2 about him looks a decent price while Eoin Morgan should be considered at 7/1.

However, a small wager on Tim Bresnan at 33/1 is the call as if England's top order are decimated then he could come in and whack up a fair total from the lower order and the price on offer is huge.

The only way England look to have a chance is if they can make a quick dent in the Sri Lankan top order as their middle and lower order does look a possible weakness and it is their top order and bowling attack that are so lethal.

This is a big if as the likes of Dilshan, Jayasuriya and Jayawardene are all match winning bastmen and could collectively destroy England's hopes in a matter of overs but an early break through would give them a glimmer.

Unfortunately though with Muralitharan and Malinga in the bowling attack, England's batsmen are in for a torrid time and barring a tactical display of genius from the side, it is very hard to envisage anything other than a facile Sri Lankan victory, leaving the Three Lions to continue on their downward spiral in One Day International cricket.

Top England batsman - Tim Bresnan 33/1

Top Sri Lankan batsman - Mahela Jayawawrdene 9/2


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