Monday 30 June 2008 

Jayasuriya, Sangakkara And Murali Star As Sri Lanka Win

Sanath Jayasuriya celebrated his 39th birthday by smashing the seventh-quickest One Day International century as Sri Lanka thrashed Bangladesh by 158 runs in their Asia Cup Super Four match in Karachi to qualify for Sunday's final.

After Sri Lanka piled up 332 for eight with Jayasuriya hitting 130 and Kumar Sangakkara 112 Muttiah Muralitharan picked up five for 31 as Bangladesh were bowled out for just 174.

Jayasuriya's first ball was an absolute gift from Mashrafe Mortaza, short and wide outside off stump and he duly carted it to the boundary, and the die was cast. Shots all around the wicket followed and he needed just 55 balls to bring up his 26th ODI century in a remarkable display of clean hitting.

The onslaught forced Bangladesh captain Mohammad Ashraful to turn to spinner Abdur Razzak during the Power Play overs, but there was no respite from Jayasuriya, and partner Kumar Sangakkara, who compiled another neat century, hitting 121 from 128 balls.

Jayasuriya smashed 16 fours and six sixes before he was caught at deep cover by Tamim Iqbal off of Alok Kapali.

At one point, Sri Lanka were on course for a score of over 400, but wickets fell swiftly after the demise of Jayasuriya with Farhad Reza and Kapali before a late charge of 18 from 12 balls by Nuwan Kulasekera helped Sri Lanka to a commanding total.

Where Sri Lanka had enjoyed a flying start and were able to build partnerships, Bangladesh could do neither, their run chase floundering once Tamim Iqbal (eight) was caught by Tillakaratne Dilshan, keeping wicket in the absence of an exhausted Sangakkara, off of Chaminda Vaas.

Mohammad Ashraful frustrated and entertained in equal measure once again, he too also falling to a catch by Dilshan, off of Thilan Thushara.

Nazimuddin (47) and Raqibul Hasan (56) at least applied themselves in something like the required manner but after Nazimuddin was run out after an horrendous mix up and Raqibul was caught at slip by Jayawardene off of Muralitharan, Bangladesh folded, losing their last five wickets for 18 runs.

Jayawardene picked up three slip catches with Ajantha Mendis again impressive, picking up two for 29 as Bangladesh were bowled out in the 39th over of the match, ending their already slim chances of qualifying for the final.

Sri Lanka won the toss and chose to bat first.

© Cricket World 2008