Sri Lanka bounced back from yesterday’s defeat to South Africa by beating Netherlands by seven wickets at the ICC Women’s World Cup Qualifier Group A fixture at Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium in Dhaka, Bangladesh.
Meanwhile, hosts Bangladesh also recovered from its loss to Pakistan yesterday by crushing Japan by ten wickets at BKSP* 2. Salma Khatun’s side skittled Japan for 38 runs and knocked off the target in just 4.4 overs without losing a batter in the process.
The second day of the tournament also saw victories once again for Pakistan and South Africa, with the two teams beating Ireland and USA respectively.
At Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium, Dilani Manodara and Helmien Rambaldo led their sides in front of a crowd of 300 in the sides’ one-day international game in Dhaka.
Rambaldo elected to bat having won the toss and it was a choice the 31-year-old may have regretted after her side failed to post more than 61 runs on the board or make it to 50 overs.
Sri Lanka’s spin bowling attack of Suwini de Alwis, Sherina Ravikumar and Udeshika Prabhodani proved to be the key players for the innings with the trio taking two wickets each. Rambaldo’s top order failed to make runs, with opener Marijn Nijman departing for a duck after having her stumps rearranged by Sripali Weerakkody.
Kerry-Anne Tomlinson along with Esther Lanser and Denise Hannema attempted to stabilise things but Manodara’s bowlers had other plans in mind. With some strong fielding and tight bowling the side had the Dutch all out for just 61 as the sun begin to rise to its midday position.
In response, the Sri Lankans made 47 towards the total before lunch, but not before the team had lost Yasoda Mendis and Eshani Kaushalya, the former being clean bowled for 26 by Laura Brouwers.
After lunch it took Chamari Attappattu and de Alwis to knock off the remaining runs but not before Attappattu was stumped by Miranda Veringmeier as the 21-year-old fell just short of her mark. It left Weerakkody and de Alwis to finish the innings and give Sri Lanka an early finish ahead of tomorrow’s rest day.
Sri Lanka’s coach Harsha de Silva said: “I am pleased with the way the bowling attack is going here in Dhaka however our batting needs to improve. We shouldn’t have lost three wickets on our way to making such a low target and it’s something I want the side to work on ahead of our next match.”
Manodara added: “I’m extremely pleased with our spinners performances today but our fast bowlers also did well against the Dutch. We fielded really well and that can be seen both by the catches we took and the two run-outs, showing that in the field we’re meeting our targets.
“The conditions here are similar to Sri Lanka so we’re working with our strengths, which are our spin bowlers who claimed plenty of wickets in our loss yesterday and also in today’s win.”
The diminutive captain also admitted that the next two fixtures are important: “We set a target of beating South Africa, who we saw as the toughest opposition in our group and unfortunately we lost to them yesterday.
“We’ve now beaten Netherlands and the way this tournament is designed, even if we finish third in the group we could qualify for the Women’s World Cup, but I don’t want us to finish third, so we need to beat Zimbabwe and USA in our next two games and make sure we finish second at least.”
Rambaldo was disappointed with her team’s performance today with both bat and ball: “We simply did not bat well enough against Sri Lanka and credit has to go to them as their bowling was superior, they are a tight unit. I know we can play better as a side, especially with our batting which failed us today.
“If I had to take one positive from today’s game I would say it was our fielding, plus we managed to claim three wickets before they made their target, which is a good thing. The pitches here definitely help the ball turn and we prepared for those types of conditions whether it be facing spin or bowling it, but today we simply were not up to the mark.
“Zimbabwe bowled bad balls which helped us score runs yesterday, Sri Lanka bowled very few bad balls making it far harder to score runs,” concluded Rambaldo.