After losing to India in a nail biting finish yesterday (10th October) Sri Lanka inched closer to book a spot in the final by beating England by 24 runs.
After nearly beating the Indians yesterday, Lankan Skipper Priyantha Kumara decided to bat first. The Sri Lankan opening batsmen were off to a stupendous start, smashing the English bowlers to all parts of GCA Stadium in Goa. The Lankan pair went on to add 112 runs for the opening partnership with Damitha Sandaruwan and Saman Kumara scoring 60 and 50 respectively.
It seemed like the running between wickets was still a problem for the Lankan batsmen as Saman Kumara once again ran himself out for the second time in the series. Sri Lanka lost two wickets shortly after the dismissal of Saman Kumara including the prized wicket of Chandana Deshapriya. Even though the Lankans were going at a steady run rate the quick fall of wickets hindered the progress of the Sri Lankan innings. The responsibility of taking Sri Lanka to a par score rested on the shoulders of K. Silva as his unbeaten half century took Sri Lanka to a mammoth 205 in their allocated 20 overs.
In the bowling department M Dean captured 3 wickets for 29 runs but the rest of the English bowlers were expensive. After a good day with the ball Dean also gave England a positive start with the bat stroking his way to a brilliant 50 off 46 balls. Hollingsworth played a more supportive role as England’s opening pair posted 87 runs for the 1st wicket.
Throughout the series the Lankans have been excellent in the field, dismissing batsmen with ease whilst running in between the wickets. The robust fielding efforts of Dinesh Maduwantha, Chandana Deshapriya and Damitha Sandaruwan helped dismiss 3 English batsmen as the Lankan bowlers stuck to good lengths, as the England batsmen found it hard to pick up the runs.
The England visually impaired team could only manage 181 as the Lankan camp leaped for joy knowing that they still had a chance to book a spot in the Final. M Dean of the England Visually Impaired team was nominated as the Man of Match for his excellent all round efforts. Sri Lanka will face England once again tomorrow with the winner going through to the final.
Sri Lanka 205/7 (20 overs): D Sandaruwan 60, Saman Kumara 50, K Silva, M Dean 3/29 G Jones 1/23
England – 181/5 (20 overs): M Dean 52, J Hollingsworth 48, P Blueitt, D Sandaruwan 1/25