click here A lot has changed from 1998 to 2018 in the world of cricket! The forthcoming Nidahas Trophy is no different. Many of you might not be aware of this fact that, the Nidahas tournament was first played in 1998 and was known as the Singer Akai Nidahas Trophy. To celebrate the Golden Jubilee of Sri Lankan independence, the tri-series was then played in a 50-over (ODI) format at R. Premadasa Stadium, Colombo, from 19 June to 7 July 1998.

The 1998 competition involved Sri Lanka, India and New Zealand with three round-robin matches. Following glorious world record partnership of 252 runs between Sachin Tendulkar and Sourav Ganguly, India crushed Sri Lanka by 6 runs to lift the Trophy. Tendulkar and Ganguly formed a great opening pair and their storming partnership helped India to a rare victory over the Lankans. With his 128 runs in the final match, the Master Blaster also crossed 7,000 runs in ODIs. Sri Lanka’s Aravinda de Silva was named the player of the series for his splendid 368 runs.

Nidahas Trophy 1998

This year, things will be little different, as the tournament will be played in a T20 format between the host nation Sri Lanka, India and Bangladesh. All three teams will be playing each other twice in round-robin matches, and the best two teams with most points will progress to the finale which is scheduled for 18th March.

Cricket fans have high hopes from India’s ODI opening duo Rohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan. It will be thrilling to see whether this fearless duo can dominate the opposition bowlers and break the Sachin and Ganguly’s 1998 partnership record or not. Recently, registering the highest partnership for India in T20I cricket history, Rohit and Lokesh Rahul put up a 165-run stand for the first wicket against Sri Lanka in the Indore T20I. The previous highest partnership for India was of the 158-run stand between Rohit and Shikhar Dhawan against New Zealand which came in November 2017.

Currently, India is ranked 3rd in the ICC T20I team table, Sri Lanka at 8th while Bangladesh rests at 10th spot in the rankings. With top-performers like Hardik Pandya, Rohit Sharma, MS Dhoni and the skipper himself, the Virat Kohli led Team India will eye a complete whitewash and to repeat the 1998’s feat once again at R. Premadasa Stadium.

In their last T20I match-up in December 2017, the Lankans were brought crashing down to earth after India’s explosive 3-0 home win. The Men in Blue capitulated Sri Lankans in that series every time by putting a mammoth score. Indian spinners exhibited their mettle in all three T20Is and so as the batsmen.

Also if we see the last T20I at Colombo, India had registered a crushing seven-wicket win. Sri Lanka’s win/loss record in T20Is at Premadasa Stadium in Colombo is of 2/12. Their win-loss ratio is the third-worst for teams playing five or more games at a home venue. India, though, has a 6-1 record at the same venue.

At the moment, Sri Lanka is on tour to Bangladesh for 2 Tests and 2 T20Is which will end on February 18th. While, India is currently engaged in 6 ODIs, 3 Tests and 3 T20s with South Africa, where the finale is scheduled for February 24th.

To be staged in the honour of Sri Lanka’s 70th year of independence, NIDAHAS Trophy 2018 will run from March 6 to March 18, 2018, at the R. Premadasa Stadium in Colombo. The Discovery’s premium sports channel, DSport has acquired the exclusive India broadcast rights of NIDAHAS Trophy 2018.With limited-overs’ cricket, especially in overseas conditions, the Indian team will get to strengthen its squad’s core for the 2019 World Cup and fix up certain loopholes.

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