Sri Lanka v England: Defending champions face must-win clash

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Home side Sri Lanka have all but booked their place in the semi-finals after two super eight victories over New Zealand and West Indies.

And the 2009 runners-up are the 8/13 favourites to defeat 2010 winners England on home soil to secure their spot in the last four.

A defeat for Stuart Broad’s travelling side would likely knock them out of the competition, given that the Windies are expected to beat New Zealand in the other Group 1 clash.

England overcame Sri Lanka in the semi-finals two years ago on their way to T20 World Cup glory, and a repeat performance in Pallekele is priced at 5/4.

However, Sri Lanka will have the full support of the home crowd behind them, while England are a shadow of that all-conquering 2010 team.

Despite the hosts winning both their last two fixtures and England winning one and losing one, the Sri Lanka recorded far less sixes than their hard-hitting opponents.

England smashed 13 balls for six against New Zealand and West Indies, whilst Sri Lanka offered a paltry seven in comparison against the same sides.

In this match England are therefore favourites to score more sixes at 8/11, while the hosts can be backed to overturn their recent form at evens.

The man of the match market looks to be overcrowded with 10 players priced between 10/1 and 12/1, therefore batsman and bowler selections may prove more worthwhile.

Having failed to score over 20 runs in the initial group stage, Mahela Jayawardene has relished batting in the super eights, recording 44 and 65 runs respectively.

In as crucial a game as this, Jayawardene should be relied upon to hit over 23.5 at 5/6, but he is the very same odds not to do so.

Luke Wright powered England to victory against New Zealand with a stunning haul of 76 runs from 43 balls, including five fours and five sixes.

Against Sri Lanka the Sussex batsman can be backed at 8/11 to hit over 2.5 fours, at 6/5 to score at least one six and at 3/1 to record another fifty.

In the bowling department, spinner Graeme Swann is yet to reach peak form for England, but is an intriguing 2/1 bet to take more wickets than Ajantha Mendis.

However, Mendis is the 10/11 favourite, with 3/1 odds for the tie.

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

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