This was a quarter final match played at The Sydney Cricket Ground. Tharindu Kaushal made his debut deputising for Rangana Herath who was injured.

Sri Lanka won the toss and elected to bat. T.M.Dilshan and Kusal Perera opened the batting for Sri Lanka; Dale Steyn bowled the first over to Kusal Janith, and it yielded 3 streaky runs to Perera. Abbot from the other end got Perera flashing again outside the off stump caught at slip by Amla, it was 3 for 1 when Sangakkara walked in to the wicket, he was trying to stem the rot by playing studiously , Dilshan at the other end curtailed his instinctive aggression and played a maiden to Steyn who had his tail up. Sangakkara was somewhat circumspect to Abbot who was tunnelling down just out side off stump and Sanga played and missed twice. Dilshan tried to break his shackles and miss hit Steyn and Du Plessis took the was 4 for 2 off 4.1 overs. The in form Thirimanne was the new man in and started off with a bang with two cover driven fours and yet another four took the same route 16 for 2.It took Sangakkara 15 balls to get off the mark. 7 overs went by it was 18 for 2. In contrast Thiri was all aggression piercing the point and cover field with two consecutive fours he then lifted Steyn over mid off for four then he went on the front foot and executed fabulous fours.35 for 2 after 10 overs. The extroverted magician Imran Thahir with his bag of tricks was brought in to the attack, he duly obliged with a spinning leg break which dipped, foxing Thiri to play too early, and got caught and bowled for 42 off 48 balls. Sri Lanka was still not out of the woods when Mahela walked in. Mahela was off colour , Thahir was getting purchase off the wicket and he misread him caught at mid-on for 6. 81 for 4 Sri Lanka was sinking in the mire. Sangakkara was subdued eking out 22 of 65 balls.Morkel was peppering Mathews with short balls and looked awkward trying to take evasive action and went for 19 off 35 balls. Sangakkara out of touch was struggling at 32 off 85 balls.Tissera Perera went for a duck caught behind off Thahir. Sri Lanka was in trouble knee deep at 115 for 6, wickets were tumbling like nine pins, Kulasekera followed Perera to the pavilion caught off Duminy 116 for 7,Kaushal the debutant did not rouble the scorer and went for a duck, 116 for 8 and Duminy got a hat-trick. Sangakkara cut lose and thrashed Abott for three fours in a row and got to 45, and then he tried to lift Morkel over cover and got out for the same score. Sri Lanka folded up at 133 in 37.2 overs. Sangakkara’s slow innings was a mystery to everyone but then again the other bats men let him down.


It was heartening to watch Sri Lanka beat the high riding Englishmen in their own backyard, well done boys. One sincerely hopes it’s not a” flash in the pan.” I would be happier if we beat the highly overrated Indians on July the 6th. They call them the “boys in blue” and they go on and on about Kholi and Dhoni and how they won the World Cup in 1983. (Readers please note that we also won the World Cup in 1996, unfortunately no one even mentions about it).Their TV presenters in particular, now that the ladies have got into the fray have added some colour to the proceedings with miniskirts and all, mind you their knowledge of the game is great but they go on and on about their “boys in blue,” I am sure that some of the experts are cursing under their breath. Thus far they have not mentioned what Kholi had for breakfast and I bet it’s not a couple of chapattis.”Afghanistan the other day nearly toppled them from their high horse.

Kholi and his boys looked like a bunch of novices for a change.

Getting back to our Lions, they were really great, Angelo Mathews brushing the cobwebs aside, started slowly but as time went by he came into his element majestically to steer his side to glory.

Lasith Malinga, he was bruised and battered not by the red and white cricket ball but by the pundits. This guy with the unique hairdo showed the cricketing pundits that he has more “brains than brawn.” His subtle change of pace, clever variations in cutters and bamboozling Yorkers were all on display when needed by Sri Lanka.

Kumar Sangakkara’s comments from the press box was absolutely brilliant, not only did he match his comments equally well with the top notch commentators in the world but his polished accent had shades of class about it.

His knowledge of the finer points of the game was marvelous, he was always one up on the others and I for one felt proud to be a Sri Lankan and unfortunately not many people are these days. Sanga had scored tons of runs right round the world and now he is about to get the plum at the ICC. I know if he started umpiring Dicky Byrd would have been in the shade. Everything he touches turn to gold. I fervently hope that Kumar Sangakkara has no idea of getting into politricks 

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