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While Sri Lanka mauled Zimbabwe by 82 runs, South Africa hammered Brendan Taylor’s men by 10 wickets.
Meanwhile, the R Premadasa Stadium in Colombo will host the other big match of the day, as Australia aim to seal a Super Eight berth when they take on West Indies in a Group B encounter.
It won’t be an easy task as they are up against a formidable Caribbean side which boasts of big-hitting Chris Gayle and mystery spinner Sunil Narine.
The Lankans will be banking heavily on home advantage against perennial under-achievers South Africa. Most of the Lankan batsmen looked in good shape and got starts against Zimbabwe, but against South Africa which has a potent bowling attack, things may turn out to be quite different.
SA’s batting line-up, however, remains untested as openers Richard Levi and Hashim Amla chased down the Zim total with consummate ease. But with the likes of Kallis, de Villiers, Duminy, Morkel and Peterson in the ranks, South Africa boats of a formidable batting line-up, quite like the Aussie one that will test itself against the ‘favourites’ West Indies in the evening match.
Led by Shane Watson’s heroics with both bat and ball, Australia made easy work of an unpredictable Irish side as they cruised to an easy win in the campaign-opener. Though the Darren Sammy-led West Indian side has got enough in its armoury to derail any side, the Caribbean batsmen had failed to impress during both their warm-ups.
The real deal, however, begins only on Saturday.