The first Test match between Sri Lanka and New Zealand will begin at Galle International Stadium in Galle tomorrow (August 14). With this series both the teams are also making their debuts in World Test Championship.
Sri Lanka have already begun their post World Cup journey with a 3-0 ODI series win over Bangladesh two weeks ago and now they will look to start their Test journey on a winning note. In spin friendly home conditions they're favourites to win and the return of Angelo Mathews, Dinesh Chandimal and Akila Dananjaya will boost their team confidence further. Captain Dimuth Karunaratne, Kusal Mendis and Kusal Perera are also in good form and spinners Lasith Embuldeniya, Dananjaya de Silva and Akila Dananjaya will be their key players.
On the other hand, New Zealand will play their first match after the World Cup final and they too will look to start their World Test Championship on a good note. Over the years their Test performance has been good and last year's series victory in the UAE should motivate them. Batting will mainly rely on captain Kane Williamson, Ross Taylor, Tom Latham and Henry Nicholls. In the bowling department, Trent Boult will be the key with the new ball and spinners Ajaz Patel, William Somerville and Mitchell Santner have to take the main responsibility in these favourable conditions.
All the major stats and facts ahead of the first Test between Sri Lanka and New Zealand in Galle
Head to Head -
|Venue||Test||Won by SL||Won by NZ||Tied||Drawn|
2 - New Zealand have lost only 2 Tests since November 2016. Those two losses came against South Africa at home in 2017 and Pakistan in the UAE last year.
7 - New Zealand have won 6 of their last 7 Tests against Sri Lanka and their last Test defeat came in Galle in November 2012.
16 - Neil Wagner has taken 16 wickets at an average of 14.0 in 2 Tests of this year.
32 - Kane Williamson needs 32 more runs to complete 1000 Test runs against Sri Lanka.
50 - Tim Southee has taken 46 wickets at an average of 18.04 in 8 Tests against Sri Lanka and needs 4 more wickets to become the second New Zealand bowler to take 50 wickets against Sri Lanka in Tests.
77.55 - Tom Latham's Test batting average against Sri Lanka. He has scored 698 runs in just 6 Tests with 3 hundreds.
250 - Trent Boult and Tim Southee need 4 and 6 more wickets respectively to complete 250 Test wickets.
1000 - Kusal Perera needs 90 more runs to achieve the milestone of 1000 Test runs.