Friday, 12 June 2009

Sri Lanka Make It To The Semis

Well two wins out of the three matches in the super eight stage of the ongoing T20 world cup in England would see that particular team through to the semi finals of the same. And now since Sri Lanka have won their first super eight match against Pakistan, they have not only come closer to blocking the semi final berth but also have made it almost theirs, for a win against minnows Ireland is taken for granted unless the ghost doesn't haunt them. For that matter, Sri Lanka have a better chance of making it three in all, with the odds favoring Sri Lanka against New Zealand as well.

It was all because of the opening pair of Sanath Jayasuriya and Tilakeratne Dilshan who put on 80 runs on the board at the end of the 8th over, thus making full use of the powerplays and the lack of cricketing experience of the Pakistan team who have not been found playing serious cricket since the past one year or so. If not for these two, the mission would not have been accomplished no matter what the Sri Lankan bowlers had to say. For, the remaining 12 overs could fetch just a mere 70 runs at a run rate of just less than 6.0 an over.

The scores that followed after the dismissal of Mahela Jayawardane read 8, 5, 9*, 0 & 2, with just a boundary inbetween that came after 7 overs. The lone six of the game came from the bat of Sanath Jayasuriya (which is as obvious) and after the fall of Mahela Jayawardane, only two boundaries were seen in the Sri Lankan innings. On the other hand, the Pakistani batsmen showed a better class if not for their initial loss of Salman Butt who was out for a duck. The trio viz Younus Khan, Shoaib Malik and Misbah threatened to take the game away from the Sri Lankans. I am indeed sorry to say that the Pakistani team was inexperienced to take on any other major team of the tournament.

This victory of Sri Lanka against Pakistan was the first one (for Sri Lanka against Pakistan) in any ICC Cricket tournament till date. They had lost to Pakistan in the 2007 edition of the T20 world cup held at South Africa after Sanath Jayasuriya went in for 64 runs from his four overs. And prior to that was Sri Lanka's loss to Pakistan ion the ICC Champions Trophy 2006 and before that it was in 1992 where Sri Lanka once again had lost to Pakistan. Since the 1992 world cup held at Australia/New Zealand, Sri Lanka have never faced Pakistan till date.

A knock out before the semis is expected in the match between Pakistan and New Zealand not to forget the run rate which would decide who would go in to the semis.

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