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WI fails to beat rain
Defending champions West Indies left fans here heartbroken, after exiting the ICC World T20 tournament at the semi-final stage, knocked out by Sri Lanka, at the Sher-e-Bangla Cricket Stadium in Mirpur last night.
Chasing a difficult 161 runs for victory, West Indies crawled to 80 for four off 13.5 overs, before rain brought a premature end to the contest and put Sri Lanka into the finals via the Duckworth/Lewis system. The West Indies at that point needed to be 107 for four to win.
Although the asking rate was 13.13 the rain prevented the West Indies from exploding at the end, which has been their trademark in this tournament.
With Sri Lanka playing three spinners, the West Indies were always going to be up against it. They started with Smith hammering a six and a four in the first over that brought 17 runs.
With the focus on the Sri Lanka spinners, it was ironic that the man putting the brakes early on the West Indies was fastman Lasith Malinga. Skippering the side after captain Dinesh Chandimal was dropped, Malinga castled both Smith (17) and a struggling Gayle (three of 13 deliveries).
The West Indies never recovered. A total of 30 runs in the six-over powerplay indicated the level of dominance by Sri Lanka. Gayle looked a shadow of himself and put a lot of pressure on Smith. In the final analysis Gayle and Samuels combined scored 21 runs from seven overs, which always kept the Windies behind the required rate. Had this not been the case the Caribbean side would have been in a good position when the rains came.
After losing both openers, a lot depended on Lendl Simmons who had a good tournament. However it was not his night as he fell cheaply and at 34 for three in the eight over, the writing was on the wall.
Samuels then put the West Indies into more difficulty as he consumed too many balls— finding the fieldsmen even with full tosses as the pressure mounted. Dwayne Bravo slammed the bowling around for 30 off 19 balls, including three fours and a six, before the need to accelerate saw his downfall.
At that point, Samuels had faced 29 balls for his 18 runs and skipper Daren Sammy visibly agitated with the slow scoring walked in.
Following him to the crease was the rain and it finally put paid to the contest with the West Indies 27 runs behind on the Duckworth/Lewis method. Within minutes, the field turned half white with hail, ushering in Kalboishakhi—the storm season.
Earlier, West Indies did well with the ball for the most part. However the first three overs and the last two gave it away.
Sri Lanka won the toss and raced to 31 without loss after three overs with Kushal Perera and Tillekeratne Dilshan targeting Samuel Badree. Left arm seamer Krishmar Santokie brought the Windies back with the wicket of Perera for 26 off just 12 balls. Next ball the crowd roared again, as Sri Lankan star Mahela Jayawardene was found short of his ground without facing a ball.
Badree also grabbed the wicket of Kumar Sangakkara for one and at the end of his spell, he had come back from two overs for 20 runs to finish with figures of 1/24.
Off-spinner Sunil Narine maintained the pressure with none of the Sri Lankans being able to read his offerings. Dilshan and Asian Cup star Lahiru Thirimanne slowly rebuilt the innings with a partnership of 42 runs from 43 balls.
Simmons then disrupted Dishan’s plan of batting deep into he innings, when his direct throw sent him back for a run a ball 39. He struck two fours and one six. Thirmanne continued to play well but with the onslaught about to commence, he was sent back by Santokie for 44. He faced 35 deliveries and hammered three fours and two sixes.
The West Indies then lost the plot over the last two overs as 32 runs came from the final two overs, as Angelo Mathews powered his team to 160 for six. the big right hander finished unbeaten on 40 off 23 balls with three fours and two sixes.
WI vs Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka inns
K Perera b Santokie 26
T Dilshan run out 39
M Jayawardene run out 0
K Sangakkara c&b Badree 1
L Thirmanne c Simmons b Santokie 44
A Mathews c Bravo b Russell 40
S Prasanna not out 6
Extras lb2, w2 4
Total 6wkts (20ovs) 160
Fall of wkts: 41, 41, 49, 91, 121, 160.
Bowling: S Badree 4-0-23-1, K Santokie 4-0-46-2, S Narine 4-0-20-0, M Samuels 4-0-23-0, A Russell 3-0-37-1, C Gayle 1-0-9-0.
D Smith b Malinga 17
C Gayle b Malinga 3
L Simmons lbw Prasanna 4
M Samuels not out 18
D Bravo c Jayawardene b Kulasekara 30
D Sammy not out 0
Extras lb1, w7 8
Total 4 wkts (13.5ovs) 80
Fall of wkts: 25, 28, 34, 77.
Bowling: N Kulasekea 2.5-0-22-1, S Senanayake 2-0-6-0, L Malinga 2-0-5-2, R Herath 4-0-27-0, S Prasanna 2-0-15-1, A Mathews 1-0-4-0.
Result: Sri Lanka won by 27 runs.Sri Lanka advance to the finals.