Matchups key in Cricket World Cup final

There is no shortage of intrigue among the key matchups as MS Dhoni of India and Kumar Sangakkarra of Sri Lanka tussle for the right to hoist the Cricket World Cup trophy in Mumbai on Saturday.

A look at the key matchups between India and Sri Lanka in the Cricket World Cup final:


As combinations go, India and Sri Lanka have the strongest top three of any batting lineups in the one-day game at the moment.

For India, Virender SehWag's explosive hitting complements Sachin Tendulkar's flawless style.

Sehwag can get on top of an opposing bowling attack with a blend of shots that rely on raw power and which can give India a flood of runs early, particularly in the mandatory powerplay.

There simply is nobody who can match Tendulkar's ability to accumulate runs — he's the leading scorer in cricket, and is one short of his 100th international century.

Tendulkar is second behind Tillakaratne Dilshan among runscorers in this tournament, with 464 at an average of 58 and a strike rate of 90.98.

Sehwag has 380 from seven innings at an average of 54.28 and a strike rate of 123.37.

For Sri Lanka, Tillakaratne Dilshan and Upul Tharanga have been the most productive opening pair in the tournament, combining in partnerships worth more than 700 runs and seemingly scoring at will against most teams.

Dilshan tops the run-scoring list with 467 at an average of 66.71 and a strike rate of 93 and Tharanga is 5th on the list with 393 runs at 65.5 and a strike rate of 86.94.



India's Zaheer Khan has been the most successful seamer at the tournament, picking up 19 wickets at an economy rate of 4.67.

His ability to swing the ball both ways makes him dangerous with the new and old ball.

If he's not taking wickets, he's beating the edge and creating pressure which forces batsmen to take risks against the other bowlers.

For Sri Lanka, Lasith Malinga is dangerous fullstop.

He will be the fastest bowler on the field and the way he slings the ball makes it difficult for batsmen to read.

His inswinging yorker is virtually unplayable.

The mop-topped paceman has taken 11 wickets at an economy rate of 5.74 in six innings.

He bowls in short, sharp spells at the start and is at his best with his reverse swing late in an innings.


Spinners tend to dominate on subcontinental pitches which are generally slow and take turn.

There's no better exponent than Sri Lanka's Muttiah Muralitharan, who is the leading wicket taker in world cricket.

He has bowled with leg injuries in the last two games and is under an injury cloud for the final, but expected to play. It's due to be his farewell to international cricket.

He has 15 wickets this tournament at an economy rate of 4 runs an over.

His best figures of the tournament came on this ground — 4-25 against New Zealand.

Murali only needs three wickets to equal retired Australian paceman Glenn McGrath's World Cup record of 71 wickets.

Harbharjan Singh is India's premier slow bowler, even if he has tended to play a containing role during this tournament.

His eight wickets, including the two key wickets in the semifinal win over Pakistan, have come at 4.41 economy.

Part-timer Yuvraj Singh has taken more wickets (13), but doesn't have the ability to unsettle batsman or possess the same variation as Harbharjan.


Two captains as wicketkeeper is rare in a game, but both India's Mahendra Singh Dhoni and Sri Lanka's Kumar Sangakkara fill dual roles with distinction.

Dhoni is an astute tactician who tends to use his bowlers in short spells to ensure opposition batsmen can't get settled.

He is an energetic wicketkeeper and has had some success already at the global level, guiding India to the Twenty20 world championship in 2007.

He has taken six catches and completed three stumpings in eight matches.

But he hasn't been in his best form with the bat, scoring 150 runs at an average of 30 and a strike rate just under 70.

Sangakkara leads from the front, in the field and with the bat.

He come in at first drop and is third on the runscoring list for the tournament with 417 runs at an average of 104.25 and a strikerate of 85.45.

His nine catches and four stumpings give him 13 dismissals so far in the tournament, equal with Australia's Brad Haddin.