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Jordan, Buttler power England to semi-finals despite Mathews heroics

England players celebrate the victory as Angelo Mathews' knock goes in vain.
England players celebrate the victory as Angelo Mathews' knock goes in vain.
©REUTERS / Action Images

England 171-4 (Buttler 66no) beat
Sri Lanka 161-8 (Mathews 73no) by 10 runs
29th Match, Super 10 Group 1, ICC World Twenty20, Delhi

Chris Jordan’s four-wicket haul and Jos Buttler’s blistering 37-ball 66 helped England secure a semi-final berth with a hard-fought 10-run win against Sri Lanka in the Super 10 Group 1 encounter of the ICC World Twenty20 in Delhi despite an unbeaten knock of 74 runs from Angelo Mathews.

The win means that England will join West Indies in the semi-finals from Group 1 while Sri Lanka, South Africa alongwith Afghanistan are out of the tournament.

Sri Lanka won the toss and opted to bowl first. After a quiet first over, Alex Hales (0) fell for a four-ball duck in the fourth, as Rangana Herath (1-27) trapped him lbw.

Jason Roy (42) and Joe Root (25) struck three boundaries each before the powerplay to push England to 38 for one after six overs.

Roy followed it up with two sixes while Root hit a boundary in the 10th over as England steadily progressed to score 65 for one at the halfway mark.

In the first ball of Jeffrey Vandersay’s (2-26) third over, Root holed out to deep midwicket and Buttler (66 not out) announced his arrival with a boundary.

Buttler continued to play positively but Roy was trapped in front of the stumps in the 13th over. Sri Lanka once again pulled it back with two tight overs, leaving England at 99 for three after 15 overs.

Eoin Morgan (22) started the final flourish with a four and a six in the 16th over. Buttler smashed three fours in the 17th over and took Dasun Shanaka (0-15) apart for 15 runs in the 18th over while bringing up a 28-ball fifty.

15 runs came from the penultimate over and Morgan was run out in the final over. Nevertheless, Ben Stokes (6 not out) smashed a six off the final ball of the innings as England ended strongly with 171 for four on the board.

Sri Lanka’s chase got off to a horrid start as they were reduced to 15 for four in three overs.

Dinesh Chandimal (1) fell in the second over from Jordan (4-28) while Tillakaratne Dilshan (2) and Milinda Siriwardana (7) were dismissed by David Willey (2-26) by having them caught at deep square leg and cover respectively.

Lahiru Thirimanne (3) was run out by Stokes (0-19) to cap off an excellent start for England.
Just when it was needed, Chamara Kapugedera (30) and Mathews (73 not out) got together and added 80 runs in eight overs to rescue Sri Lanka’s chase.

In the 12th over, Mathews who had struck three boundaries so far, took Adil Rashid (0-31) apart for three sixes leaving Sri Lanka to score 84 runs in the last eight overs.

Kapugedera holed out to deep midwicket off Liam Plunkett (1-23) as Sri Lanka lost half their side with 95 runs on the board.

Mathews completed a 40-ball fifty and along with Thisara Perera (20), he helped Sri Lanka plunder Moeen Ali (0-32) for 21 runs in the 16th over.

England asserted their dominance though Jordan who got Perera caught at mid-off. With 34-runs needed from the last three overs, Shanaka (15) hit a six and a four, bringing the equation down to 22 from 12 balls.

Jordan conceded only seven runs and accounted for Shanaka and Herath (1) in the penultimate over while Stokes kept his calm and gave away just four runs in the final over, giving England a 10-run victory.

With this win, England joined West Indies as the two teams to qualify from Group 1 for the semi-finals. Buttler was the player of the match.

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