Australia | A team that is the reigning champion entering the T20 World Cup has rarely had it easy. A T20 World Cup champion has just twice in the previous six editions reached the semifinal round of the follow-up competition.

That would be known to India, England, Sri Lanka, and the West Indies, who failed to advance to the final four in 2009, 2012, 2016, and 2021, respectively. Even West Indies and Pakistan, who advanced to the semifinals in 2010 and 2014, Australia were unable to advance farther. Australia’s turn is now. Which club do they plan to join?

Australia lost to New Zealand

The Australia lost to New Zealand by 89 runs in the Super 12 opening, a tough group where a loss could be very expensive for any side. Australia has its work cut out for them with a net run rate of -4.45 and other teams getting off to winning beginnings.

The top-order, which fell short in a crucial match, will need to step up, starting with captain Aaron Finch. One of Australia’s strengths, bowling, struggled against the Black Caps, but the host team will rely on Josh Hazlewood’s success against Sri Lanka’s top three to contain them.

Additionally, Australia will be hoping that Pat Cummins and Mitchell Starc can change their powerplay record, as they have combined for just 10 wickets since 2021.

Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka’s T20 World Cup campaign, meanwhile, resembles their Asia Cup performance quite a bit. They were given a wake-up call following their defeat by Afghanistan, and that boost helped them win the Asia Cup. They also got one in Australia. Sri Lanka has won three straight matches after losing to Namibia in the group stage, which will give them confidence when they face the hosts.

Maheesh Theekshana and Wanindu Hasaranga set the tone with the ball, and Kusal Mendis, Dhananjaya de Silva, and Charith Asalanka contributed solid performances with the bat in a decisive nine-wicket victory over Ireland to begin their Super 12 duties. While Australia is far more powerful than Ireland, Sri Lanka will bet on their chances against a damaged group that is looking for a change of direction.

What to expect:

In a previous bilateral T20I match played here, England scored 208 against Australia, while the pursuing team was not far behind at 200. On the other side, in their first Super 12 encounter, England forced Afghanistan to work hard for their dismal 112 score. The nighttime low is predicted to be 15 degrees Celsius.