Published: Saturday, 03 August 2013 10:40
Sri Lanka’s batsmen undid all the good work done by their bowlers, as the crumbled while chasing a very modest total, handing South Africa a victory in the first T20 at the R Premadasa Stadium.
Set a very gettable target of 116, the response was almost farcical, as the Sri Lankan batting embarrassed themselves in front of a capacity crowd. Kumar Sangakkara fought, but around him the rest crumbled as Sri Lanka only managed 103 for the loss of 9 wickets.
Sangakkara ended up on an unbeaten 59. The next highest score was 11. Perhaps Sri Lanka took the below par target too easily. Rash and aggressive strokes at the top were followed by a lack of urgency, before the accumulated pressure ended up in an all out collapse. With Mahela Jayawardene rested again, and Sangakkara pushed down to number four, the onus was on the young talent. Kusal Perera responded with another failure; playing a couple of rash shots before getting out for 11. Chandimal followed soon after in a similar fashion. At the depth, with the required rate rising, the lower middle order completely lost their heads, throwing away their wickets in quick succession while Sangakkara watched helplessly from the other end. Mathews fell to a soft dismissal, chipping the ball tamely back to the bowler. The very next ball Jeevan Mendis tried to sweep out of the ground, only to hole out in the deep. It was senseless batting at its finest.
It was the 19th over that sealed the game for the South Africans. With 21 run required of 18 deliveries, Sachithra Senanayake started swinging wildly instead of looking to get the in form Sangakkara on strike. The over ended up being a double wicket maiden, all but confirming an incredible heist by the Proteas.
It was Senanayake that set up the Sri Lankans nicely in the first innings however, and at the innings break the Proteas wouldn’t have been very comfortable with their total. Senanayake took wickets in his first 3 overs, and the Proteas struggled against the Lankan spinners. Only JP Duminy offered any resistance, as he hit a fighting half century to drag South Africa to a score of 115. As it turned out, it was more than enough.
Sri Lanka’s domestic record of chasing is far from impressive. It is a worrying sign and indicates that the middle order does not handle pressure very well. Every team has their off days though, and while today’s performance was certainly very disappointing, perhaps the players should be given the rest of the series to prove themselves before being burnt at the stake.
The teams now move to Hambantota for the final two games, and Sri Lanka will hope that a change in venue brings about a change in their fortunes in the shortest format.
South Africa 115 for 6 (Duminy 51, Senanayake 3-14) beat Sri Lanka 103 for 9 (Sangakkara 59*, Duminy 3-18) by 12 runs
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Dialog Rugby League: Week 4
Havelock SC vs CH & FC
@FT Havelock SC (5T, 3C,1P) 34 beat CH&FC 05 (1T)
Navy SC vs Kandy SC
@FT Kandy SC (2T,2P) 16 beat Navy SC 06 (2P)
Army SC vs Air Force
@FT Army SC ( 5T, 4C) 33 beat 10 (2T) Air Force
CR & FC vs Sharks
@FT CR (7T, 3C, 1P) 46 beat 10(1T, 1C, 1P) Sharks
England tour of Sri Lanka 2014
1st ODI | 26th Nov| RPS Colombo | 14:30 local
2nd ODI| 29th Nov| RPS Colombo | 10:00 local
3rd ODI | 3rd Dec | Hambantota | 14:30 local
4th ODI | 7th Dec | RPS Colombo | 10:00 local
5th ODI | 10th Dec| Pallekele | 14:30 local
6th ODI | 13th Dec| Pallekele | 10:00 local
7th ODI | 16th Dec| RPS Colombo | 14:30 local
Dialog Rugby League: Week 4
Havelock SC (5T, 3C,1P) 34 beat CH&FC 05 (1T)
Kandy SC (2T,2P) 16 beat Navy SC 06 (2P)
Army SC ( 5T, 4C) 33 beat 10 (2T) Air Force
CR (7T, 3C, 1P) 46 beat 10(1T, 1C, 1P) Sharks
Sri Lanka tour of India, 5th ODI
Sri Lanka 286/8 in 50 overs
(Angelo Mathews 139*, Lahiru Thirimanne 52;
Dhawal Kulkarni 3 for 57, Akshar Patel 2 for 45, Ravichandran Ashwin 2 for 56)
India 288/7 in 48.4 overs
(Ambati Rayudu 59, Virat Kohli 139*;
Ajantha Mendis 4 for 73)
India won by 3 wickets
Sri Lanka tour of India, 4th ODI
India 404/5 in 50 overs
(Rohit Sharma 264, Virat Kohli 66:
Angelo Mathews 44/2)
Sri Lanka 251 in 43.1 overs
(Angelo Mathews 75*, Lahiru Thirimanne 59:
Dhawal Kulkarni 34/4)
India won by 153 runs
Sri Lanka tour of India, 3rd ODI
Sri Lanka 242 in 48.2 overs
(Mahela Jayawardena 118, TM Dilshan 53:
Umesh Yadev 53/4, Axar Patel 40/3)
India 245/4 in 44.1 overs
(Shikhar Dhawan 91, V Kohli 53:
TM Dilshan 10/1, Nuwan Kulasekara 37/1)
India won by 6 wickets