Sri Lanka Crushes Defending World T/20 Champions England in their own Den by 9 wickets
A truly professional performance by Sri Lanka helped them to defeat England by 9 wickets at Bristol, the reigning World T/20 champions with nearly three overs to spare. Sri Lanka Deputy T/20 skipper Kandamby won the toss and had no hesitation in electing to field on a slow surface. Sri Lanka was led by Thilina Kandamby deputising for the injured regular skipper Dilshan.,whileEngland T/20 team was led by Stuart Broad. England’s openers Lumb and Kieswetter who had not opened together for over an year since the last T/20 World Cup held in the Caribbean. In the third over both were dismissed with the score on 12.Pietersn and Eoin Morgan soon steadied the innings with flourishing strokes all round the wicket. Morgan,left handed former Irish player was the more aggressor of the two. They batted confidently aiming to make the England score around 150.
When Malinga and veteran Jayasuriya were introduced both were dismissed when they were on top of the bowling. Initially Malinga had Morgan caught at deep mid wicket for a quick fire 47, made in 27 balls with 4 fours and 3 sixes. In the previous over he belted Thisara Perera for over 20 runs including 3 sixes and one four. Very soon Jayasuriya’s usually low trajectory left arm leg spin made to skid through to clean bowl Pietersen for 41 in 32 balls which included 3 fours and 2 sixes. England was then 102 for 4 wickets in the 12th over. The acting skipper Kandamby rotated the bowlers intelligently with good field placements. Apart from No 6 Ravi Bopara no one else could enter double figures. The England could muster at the end only 136 runs in their allotted 20 overs. The task for Sri Lanka seemed easy. Most successful bowler was Malinga with figures of 2 for 14 off 4 overs and Sanath Jayasuriya with 2 for 18 in 3 overs.
Veteran Jayasuriya and Mahela Jayawardena opened for Sri Lanka.It was Jayawardena who palmed most of the bowling and batted aggressively. After scoring a boundary through backward of point Jayasuriya was the batsman who had faced only a fewer number of balls of the two. Jayasuriya departed for 8 off 8 balls the score was 40 in 4.1 overs,Mahela was joined by the experienced Sangakkara. Both were able to pierce the fielders and score freely with a good strike rate, displaying truly aggressive professional batsmen ship. In the 6 mandatory overs England made 33 for 2 while Sri Lanka made 54 for 1 wicket.
Sri Lanka with the assistance of the entertaining 2nd wicket partnership between the experienced right hand and left hand combination of Mahela jayawardena and Kumar Sangakkara added 97 runs for the unbroken 2nd wicket stand stunned the opponents, England to win convincingly by 9 wickets. With nearly 3 over’s to spare. Mahela who was adjudged ‘Man of the Match’ for his 72*off 57 balls with 8 fours and 1 six while his partner Sangakkara was on 43*made in 39 balls with 4 fours.
England 136 for 9 in 20 overs.Morgan 47, Pietersen 41 Bopara 19 Malinga 2 for 15 and Jayasuriya 2 for 18 Sri Lanka 137 for 1 wicket Mahela Jayawardena 71* Sangakkara 43*
By Sunil Thenabadu (SLPL) © SLPLT20.Co