Perth: An Australian side in the pinkest of form meet Sri Lankan opponents with plenty of improve upon following a first-up loss to India in a mediocre match that was also at the WACA ground. While the tourists will benefit from having played a match at the ground, a series of starts with the bat, some middling bowling and hesitance in the field - from the newly-appointed captain Mahela Jayawardene's field placements as much as his men's occasionally indifferent attacks on the ball - must be rectified if they are to get close to the hosts.
Michael Clarke's major concern as captain appears to be who to rotate out of the side to hand a debut to the adopted Queenslander Peter Forrest. None of David Warner, Ricky Ponting, Michael Hussey or his brother David will want to sit out, and the desire for a varied bowling attack would appear to keep Daniel Christian safe as the allrounder. The bowling attack functioned smoothly against India at the MCG despite losing Brett Lee, and Mitchell Starc in particular will look forward to another match in Perth after his strong Test showing at the ground.
Sri Lanka's rebuild after another change of cricket administration, captain and coach requires solid results to bolster confidence and create belief. Jayawardene, Kumar Sangakkara, Tillakaratne Dilshan and Dinesh Chandimal might have added to it had one gone on from a start to punch out a substantial innings against India, but as it was their series of starts allowed India the luxury of a chase where the required run rate was never stretched. Lasith Malinga can also produce the spark required, but may require more aggressive fields from his captain.