Tuesday, March 1, 2011

World Cup 2011 : Sri Lanka vs Kenya...

Today's match was between Sri Lanka & Kenya. Kenya having lost their previous two matches & not looking good & Sri Lanka, smarting from their loss to Pakistan in the previous match at the same venue in Colombo.

Kenya won the toss & elected to bat. The Lankans had drafted in Malinga in this game for the much needed match practice, as he would have to be a very important & potent part of their bowling attack.
The openers got out very quickly, one to Kulasekara & the other to Malinga, with the score showing 8 for 2 in 3 overs. Howver, next in Obuya brothers dug in & to their credit, partnered almost 100 runs, before Malinga again came in & clipped one in the 32nd over, to peg back the score at 102 for 3. Veteran Steve Tikolo also did not last long. He smashed Angelo Mathews to point region, where Dilshan plucked him out of thin air. It was a superb catch for dismissal & the score read 120 for 4. Wickets kept tumbling one after the other, as Malinga ran through the innings with his slinging yorkers. In the end Kenya folded for a paltry 142 in 44 overs, with Malinga ending with figures of 6 for 38 in 7.4 overs, including a hat trick, his second in World Cup. What a beginning for him in this World Cup, as the crowd was in raptures. Barring the two Obuya brothers, making fifty each, no one else managed a double figure mark.

Reply by the Lankans was whirlwind as expected. Dilshan came with a mindset of smashing each & every delivery. He & Tharanga put up 72 runs in 8.2 overs for the opening partnership, as Kenyan bowlers looked clueless. Dilshan got out trying to force the pace, that was not necessary, for 44 runs off 30 deliveries. In came Sangakkara & along with Tharanga, look the team past the target in 18.4 overs. In the end Tharanga was unbeaten at 67 from 59 balls & Sanga at 27 from 24. They had 188 balls to spare, & it was a convincing victory for the Lankans. Dilshan, will have to put his head down & play till at least 35-40 overs to ensure that Sri Lanka does well with stronger opponents ahead in the tournament.

Man of the Match : Without a doubt Lasith Malinga, for his figures of 6 for 38, including a hat trick. The only bowler as yet to claim two hat tricks in World Cup arena.  

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