Sri Lanka complete clean sweep despite Samuels hundred
Sri Lanka 180-5 (Perera 50) beat
West Indies 206-9 (Samuels 110no) by 19 runs (D/L)
Third One-Day International in Pallekele
Riding on the back of a solid fifty from Kusal Perera, Sri Lanka overcame Marlon Samuels' unbeaten century to defeat West Indies by 19 runs (D/L method) in the rain affected third One-Day International in Pallekele to complete a 3-0 series clean sweep.
Sri Lanka won the toss and opted to bowl first with rain anticipated later in the game.
Lasith Malinga (2-43) struck in the very first over as Johnson Charles (4) chipped one straight to backward point.
His opening partner, Andre Fletcher (6) too departed in the fourth over, trapped lbw by Suranga Lakmal (2-40).
West Indies were 12 for two at that stage and that's when rain interrupted the game.
After a delay of one hour, play resumed and West Indies lost Jermaine Blackwood (2) and Darren Bravo (4) in successive overs to leave the visitors reeling at 18 for four.
Samuels (110 not out) announced his arrival with hat-trick of boundaries in the eighth over from Lakmal.
Denesh Ramdin (4) tried to defend a short delivery from Dushmantha Chameera (2-39) but edged it to the keeper. West Indies were struggling at 52 for five at that stage.
A 32-run stand between Samuels and Jonathan Carter (6) was ended when the latter edged it to the wicket-keeper off Ajantha Mendis (2-51).
Samuels completed his fifty in 51 balls and followed it up with a boundary. Very soon, the rain came down once again, stopping the game for more than two hours.
When the rain finally stopped, the game was revised to a 36-overs a side contest.
Chameera dismissed Jason Holder (19) straight after resumption of play. Samuels struck a six and a boundary in the 25th over as West Indies scored 15 runs from the over.
Samuels, along with Carlos Brathwaite (18) put on a 55-run stand which came up in quick time. The swashbuckling batsman took Malinga apart for three consecutive boundaries in the 28th over.
Brathwaite’s stay at the crease was ended by Mendis who trapped him plumb in front. Samuels soon completed his century, taking just 85 balls to get to the landmark.
Angelo Mathews (1-11) dismissed Sunil Narine (9) when he holed out to deep square leg. Samuels’ unbeaten hundred pushed West Indies to a total of 206 for nine in the allotted 36 overs.
Malinga, Lakmal, Chameera and Mendis picked a couple of wickets each while Mathews chipped in with one.
Sri Lanka’s target was revised to 190 runs as per the Duckworth Lewis method.
Kusal Perera (50) hit a six in the first over, getting the chase underway emphatically. Tillakaratne Dilshan (21) was also in the mood as he hit four boundaries in four overs and was dropped at point in the sixth over.
However, in the very next delivery, Dilshan repeated the same shot and this time Carter (1-19) made no mistake.
Perera and Lahiru Thirimanne (21) put together a 55-run stand to lay the platform for the finish. Thirimanne lobbed up a simple catch to Samuels at covers. At that stage, Sri Lanka still needed 95 runs.
Perera attempted to slog one over to mid-wicket but picked out the fielder to perfection, giving his wicket away to Ravi Rampaul (1-34).
When Sri Lanka were sailing along, Carter struck with the wicket of Dinesh Chandimal (23), who edged it to the keeper.
Milinda Siriwardana (17) played a cameo before he was dismissed by Holder (2-44), feathering a catch to the keeper.
Three overs later, the rain came down once again and this time it drew curtains on the game. Sri Lanka were declared winner by a margin of 19 runs by the D/L method.
The victory gave Sri Lanka a 3-0 victory in the three match series. Holder picked two wickets for West Indies while Rampaul, Brathwaite and Carter got one each.
Samuels was the man of the match for his century while Perera was awarded the man of the series.
© Cricket World 2015