SANATH JAYASURIYA vs NATHAN BRACKEN
It can’t get more engrossing than this explosive battle of lefties. Jayasuriya has defied his critics and age in equal measure and at 39-plus, he looks to be mastering the T20 format as well. Jayasuriya will be up against one of the wiliest left-arm seamers around in Nathan Bracken, who thrives on variations — dead slow leg-cutters, crafty outswingers, nippy bouncers and what not. Can he nip the Matara Mauler in the bud?
DAVID HUSSEY vs MUTTIAH MURALITHARAN
With Symonds out, David Hussey will shore up the Aussie middle-order with his explosive style but Muttiah Muralitharan, the fulcrum of the Lankan attack, will be looking to upset his plans. Singles or even dot balls against Murali might be the way to go for many batsmen but Hussey, blessed with clever use of the crease, would love to take that extreme step — deposit the offie into the stands.
TILAKARATNE DILSHAN vs BRETT LEE
Dilshan was a revelation in IPL and has evolved from a patient accumulator to the punisher upfront. Quick singles and fluent cover drives interspersed with power-packed pulls are the hallmarks of Dilshan’s style. Fresh from a devastating mauling at the hands of Chris Gayle, can Brett Lee do enough to keep the Lankan opener quiet? Lankans will be hoping Dilshan’s IPL form continues.