Friday 16 January 2009 

Sri Lanka Scramble Home To Final Victory

Sri Lanka Scramble Home To Final Victory
Sri Lanka Scramble Home To Final Victory
© REUTERS/Andrew Biraj (BANGLADESH) Picture Supplied by Action Images
 

Sri Lanka 153-8 (Sangakkara 59) beat
Bangladesh 152 (Kulasekera 3-19, Mendis 3-24) by two wickets

ODI Tri-Series Final, Mirpur

Sri Lanka scrambled home to a two-wicket win to take victory in the One Day International tri-series final over Bangladesh in Mirpur.

A devastating spell of pace bowling from Nazmul Hossain and Mashrafe Mortaza left Sri Lanka in the unfamiliar position of six for five before they reached 153 for eight in the penultimate over to win.

Nazmul removed Upul Tharanga (0), Mahela Jayawardene (0) and Thilan Thushara (1) while Mortaza had Chamara Kapugedera caught for one after Sanath Jayasuriya was run out for a duck by Shakib Al Hasan.

They could have been 15 for six but Tamim Iqbal put down Jehan Mubarak in the slips to deny Mortaza a second wicket.

Mubarak went on to make 16 before he was run out by Mohammad Ashraful and as Kumar Sangakkara passed his 7,000th ODI run, Sri Lanka worked their way back into the match with Farveez Maharoof offering the wicket-keeper useful support.

Sangakkara's 44th ODI century followed but his dismissal, caught and bowled for 59 by Shakib Al Hasan, threw the game wide open once again.

However, as Sri Lanka took their third and final PowerPlay with five overs to go and Muttiah Muralitharan came in and quickly smashed an unbeaten 33 in 16 balls to put the game beyond Bangladesh.

Maharoof was unbeaten on 38 from 76 balls.

The flurry of wickets in the second innings followed a good performance by Sri Lanka to bowl Bangladesh out for 152 as  pacer Nuwan Kulasekera and spinner Ajantha Mendis claimed three wickets apiece.

After Sri Lanka won the toss and chose to field they once again made early inroads with Kulasekera (3-19) making his way to 50 wickets in ODIs by snaring Tamim Iqbal (18), Zunaed Siddique (1) and Mushfiqur Rahim (4) to leave Bangladesh at 42 for four in the 15th over after Mohammad Ashraful had been dismissed for 13.

Unlike the match of two days ago, there was to be no recovery from Shakib Al Hasan, who followed up his belligerent 92 not out with just nine before he was caught behind off of Thushara.

There were contributions from Mahmudullah (26) and Naaem Islam (21) and Roqibul Hassan dug in with an unbeaten 43 in 107 balls before the tail was swiftly dealt with by Mendis (3-24) and Muralitharan (2-33).

Bangladesh won the previous encounter between the two sides earlier in the week by five wickets.

© Cricket World 2009

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