Kusal Perera and Wanindu Hasaranga threatened to pull off the impossible but Oshane Thomas’ 5-fer proved to be enough to give West Indies a 25-run win in the 1st T20I between Sri Lanka and West Indies in Pallekelle.
West Indies skipper Kieron Pollard, playing his 500th T20, won the toss and had no hesitation in batting first, given the Windies long batting line-up. Brandon King and Lendl Simmons got them off to exactly the start they wanted but it was Andre Russell who really stepped on the accelarator, battering 2 fours and 4 sixes on his way to a 14-ball 35. Russell was playing his 1st international since hobbling off the field during the 50-over World Cup and it took the perfect yorker from Lasith Malinga to send the right hander back to the pavilion.
Pollard, who had never really got going during the tour, finally put together an innings of impact, making 34 in 15 deliveries and getting to 10,000 T20 runs along the way as West Indies posted 196, their highest T20I score against Sri Lanka.
Sri Lanka needed a special effort to get to the target but found a road-block in the form of Oshane Thomas. Thomas produced some serious pace to trouble the Sri Lankans, claiming 3 wickets in his 1st over to break the back of the Lankan batting line-up. At 56/5 by the end of the powerplay, Sri Lanka were looking down and out but a measured, smart partnership between Kusal Perera and Wanindu Hasaranga brought Sri Lanka right back into the game.
With 54 runs to win in nearly 5 overs, the game was hanging in the balance but it was Rovman Powell who turned things around for the Windies, trapping Hasaranga in front for 44 on review. Perera fell soon after to a perfect yorker from Russell, ending Sri Lanka’s hopes of a miraculous recovery.
Thomas was rightfully named Player of the Match for his figures of 5/28 in three overs – claiming all 5 of his wickets in the powerplay to blow Sri Lanka away.
The teams will meet for the final time for this tour on the 6th of March for the 2nd T20I at the same venue.
|Lendl Simmons||not out||67||51||7||2||131.37|
|Brandon King||c Wanindu Hasaranga b Lakshan Sandakan||33||25||5||1||132.00|
|Nicholas Pooran||c Avishka Fernando b Wanindu Hasaranga||14||12||2||0||116.67|
|Andre Russell||b Lasith Malinga||35||14||2||4||250.00|
|Kieron Pollard||c Avishka Fernando b Isuru Udana||34||15||3||2||226.67|
|Fabian Allen||not out||3||3||0||0||100.00|
|Extras||10 (b 2 , lb 2 , nb 0, w 6, pen 0)|
|Total||196/4 (20 Overs, RR: 9.8)|
|Fall of Wickets||1-74 (8.2) Brandon King, 2-106 (12.3) Nicholas Pooran, 3-145 (15.2) Andre Russell, 4-190 (19.2) Kieron Pollard,|
|Avishka Fernando||c Lendl Simmons b Oshane Thomas||7||5||1||0||140.00|
|Kusal Perera||b Andre Russell||66||38||6||3||173.68|
|Shehan Jayasuriya||c Sheldon Cottrell b Oshane Thomas||0||1||0||0||0.00|
|Kusal Mendis||c Lendl Simmons b Oshane Thomas||0||2||0||0||0.00|
|Angelo Mathews||c Andre Russell b Oshane Thomas||10||8||2||0||125.00|
|Dasun Shanaka||b Oshane Thomas||2||8||0||0||25.00|
|Wanindu Hasaranga||lbw b Rovman Powell||44||34||4||0||129.41|
|Thisara Perera||c Sheldon Cottrell b Rovman Powell||11||7||0||1||157.14|
|Isuru Udana||c Kieron Pollard b Dwayne Bravo||3||5||0||0||60.00|
|Lasith Malinga||b Sheldon Cottrell||8||6||0||1||133.33|
|Lakshan Sandakan||not out||1||1||0||0||100.00|
|Extras||19 (b 0 , lb 10 , nb 0, w 9, pen 0)|
|Total||171/10 (19.1 Overs, RR: 8.92)|
|Fall of Wickets||1-16 (1.3) Avishka Fernando, 2-16 (1.4) Shehan Jayasuriya, 3-17 (1.6) Kusal Mendis, 4-41 (3.6) Angelo Mathews, 5-56 (5.6) Dasun Shanaka, 6-143 (15.3) Wanindu Hasaranga, 7-150 (16.2) Kusal Perera, 8-168 (18.1) Isuru Udana, 9-171 (19.1) Lasith Malinga,|