Dominant England face beleaguered SL

Morgan and co will strengthen their case for top-four with win against Islanders

Dominant England face beleaguered SL PHOTO: REUTERS

England are firing on all cylinders as they hope to make it into the top four come the end of the league round of the World Cup, where all 10 teams were given an equal chance of qualifying for the semi-finals.

As Eoin Morgan are co are bagging victory after victory with just one loss, against Pakistan, during the league round, it will surely be a one-sided contest when they take on a struggling Sri Lanka side at Leeds.

Sri Lanka are currently sixth on the league table with four points courtesy one win, two losses and two washouts, the last results gifting them two points, one per match.

However, their place in the top 10 doesn’t show the dismal show that they’ve put on in the tournament.

In their latest loss, they were outclassed by Australia as the Islanders failed to chase a 335-run target, all-out for 247.

Earlier, their start to the tournament was also catastrophic as they were bundled out for only 136 as New Zealand chased the target with ease without losing any wicket.

Their only victory came in their second match of the tournament where they beat Afghanistan, but even then they could only muster up 201 all-out before the Afghans made a mess of a rain-affected chase and lost by 34 runs (DLS method).

While Sri Lanka haven’t shown any signs of dominating their opponents even once in the tournament, England have been driving their World Cup campaign forward in the highest gear possible and are second on the league table with eight points and a better run-rate than third-place Australia.

They opened the World Cup with a 104-run win over South Africa, lost to Pakistan by 14 runs all the while scoring 334 in reply to Sarfaraz and co’s 348, beat Bangladesh next by 106 runs, dominated West Indies with an eight-wicket victory and lately thrashed Afghanistan by 150 runs.

Their latest victory was a warning for all opponents as captain Morgan broke the ODI record for most sixes in a single innings by clearing the fence on 17 occasions.

With such a big gulf in the quality of cricket both teams are playing at the moment, it will surely be an upset if England fail to overcome the Sri Lanka hurdle to further consolidate their chances of entering the last-four of the World Cup.