For Sri Lanka, on the other hand, the ODI series is more than just avenging the Test defeat.
The first One Day International of the 5-match series between India and Sri Lanka will be played at Dambulla today. India had recently white-washed the 3-match Test series against the Lankans and will be looking to take that momentum into the limited-overs’ leg of the tour as well. For Sri Lanka, on the other hand, the ODI series is more than just avenging the Test defeat. They need two more wins to confirm their spot in the 2019 ODI World Cup by way of automatic qualification. If they manage to do that, the West Indies will not be able to overtake them even if they win all the six ODIs against Ireland and England. India had blanked Sri Lanka, 5-0, the last time the two sides played a bilateral ODI series, back in November 2015, in India.
Meanwhile, Indian captain Virat Kohli continued to be the world’s top-ranked One-day batsman in the latest ICC ODI rankings. Having 873 points in his kitty, Kohli will have a chance to increase the 12-point lead over second-placed Australian David Warner at the five-match ODI series against Sri Lanka.
As for the ICC ODI Team Rankings, India are currently at number three and they would have to win the upcoming series atleast by a 4-1 margin to ensure that they stay at that position, ahead of England.At 114 points, India, even if win the series 3-2, will slip to 113 points and behind England on decimal points.