Sri Lanka v England: Pillars of hosts’ batting set to crumble

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The road to ODI recovery starts in Kandy for England, as Alastair Cook returns from his ban to lead the side in two games at the Pallekele International Cricket Stadium.

The tourists must win all three remaining games to claim series victory and, as our three best bets for the contest indicate below, they stand a fantastic chance at a ground that Sri Lanka’s two superstars historically fear.

England to win @ 13/8

The only game Cook’s men have prevailed in so far on this tour happened to be the one that Mahela Jayawardene missed.

Heading to a venue that they have never played at before, and one that Jayawardene suffers at, England can capitalise to give their comeback a kick start.

Mahela Jayawardene to score under 30.5 runs @ 5/6

The 37-year-old is showing all his guile and experience in the series to lead the batting averages from his three appearances.

His totals in those outings were 55, 77* and 44 but he arrives at Kandy with a meagre average of just 25 from nine knocks and is due a failure.

Kumar Sangakkara to score under 33.5 runs @ 5/6

Like his great mate, Sangakkara has been a dominant force for Sri Lanka in the four games to date.

The keeper-batsman is the leading runscorer in the series and has three consecutive half centuries to his name since his 2 in the first match.

However, just like Jayawardene, the left-hander struggles at the Pallekele, with his jaw-dropping average of 25.11 from 10 games the worst of any ground he has played more than five ODIs at.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Matt Wiggins

No idyllic sound comes close to leather on willow for Matt, whose previous experience includes stints with Spin Magazine and Surrey County Cricket Club. It's not just cricket that interests him though, with football, golf, tennis and any American sport not played on ice all high on his list of favourites.