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Friday, Jan 28, 2022
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Champions Trophy

Lankans Cruise Into Semis

Toying with the inexperienced Dutch, the hosts script a 206-run victory.

Lankans Cruise Into Semis
Lankans Cruise Into Semis
outlookindia.com
-0001-11-30T00:00:00+05:53

Hosts Sri Lanka became the first team to confirm their place in the semi-finals of the Champions Trophy cricket tournament when they thrashed Holland by 206 runs in their second and final Group D league match
at Colombo today.

Helped by a fine century from Marvan Atapattu, Sri Lanka piled up 292 for six, though not in the most authoratative fashion, after electing to bat and then skittled out Holland for a mere 86 runs in 29.3 overs for their second successive win in the tournament.

Sri Lanka, who had earlier defeated Pakistan by eight wickets in the opening game of the tournament, will take on the winner of Group A, comprising Australia, New Zealand and Bangladesh, in the semi-final on September 27.

Off-spinner Muthiah Muralitharan ran through the inexperienced Holland batting line-up, claiming four wickets for 15 runs from just 5.3 overs.

Only three Holland batsmen were able to move into the double figures with Tim de Leede, who earlier in the day had taken an unbelievable catch to dismiss Aravinda de Silva, top-scoring with 31.

Holland lost their first three wickets for just four runs before de Leede and Reinout Scholte added 42 runs for the fourth wicket to put up a semblance of a fight.

But both these batsmen got out within ten runs of each other and the Holland innings was all but over.

Edgar Schiferli, the third batsman to score in double figures apart from de Leede and Scholte (12), hit Muralitharan for a four and a six before being stumped by Kumara Sangakkara off the same bowler. Schiferli, who scored 15, became the fifth victim of Sangakkara who had already taken four catches by then.

Earlier, Sri Lanka made short work of Holland's bowling attack to amass a huge total. Atapattu and captain Sanath Jaysuriya, who made run-a-ball 36 with six boundaries, put on 59 runs for the opening wicket in 9.4 overs before Jayasuriya drove straight into the hands of Bas Zuiderent at short covers.

Atapattu was then associated in a 116-run second wicket stand with Sangakkara who made 41 from 68 balls with five boundaries. Sangakkara was clean bowled around his legs while trying to sweep a fuller delivery from spinner Adeel Raja.

Raja was relatively the most impressive of the Holland bowlers, conceding 50 runs in his quota of overs, while taking two wickets.

Even though Atapattu held on to his end, Sri Lanka lost a few more wickets during the last ten overs and were restricted to a total within the 300-run mark.

It was not exactly a cakewalk for the Sri Lankans with Holland too having their moments of glory like the stunning one-handed running catch de Leede took at the long-on boundary to dismiss de Silva for 23. 

Then there was the brilliant return catch by captain Roland Lefebvre to send back the hard-hitting Chaminda Vaas and the fine pick and throw by Zuiderent to run out Jayawardene off a direct hit.

But in between their bursts of inspiration, Holland disappointed with their pretty ordinary effort in the field with Edgar Schiferli dropping two easy chances towards the end of the innings.

Holland also bowled as many as 18 wides which swelled the extras to 38.

Atapattu reached his sixth one-day century with a two but was out immediately thereafter when he drove into the hands of Luuk van Troost. Atapattu hit eight boundaries in his 118-ball knock.

Jayawardene (14) and Vaas (16) chipped in with useful scores but could not stay till the end. Umpire Dave Orchard adjudged Jayawardene leg before wicket off Lefebvre but then had doubts and referred it to the third umpire who ruled the batsman not out.

However, Jayawardene could not make much of the chance and was run out immediately after that. Arnold made a 20-ball 22 and remained unbeaten in the company of Muralitharan who was not out on one.

PTI

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