Sri Lanka Cruise Into The Quarterfinals




Tillakaratne Dilshan

Tillakaratne Dilshan

Sri Lanka now are officially into the quarter-finals for contention of the ICC World Cup 2011. It was a brilliant day for the Lankan fans with Sri Lanka crushing Zimbabwe in the Group A encounter at Pallekele. Dilshan was the hallmark of the day by scoring a century and also picking four wickets.  And, he along with Tharanga also parted for the record breaking 282 run opening stand. Zimbabwe on the other hand never seemed to really trouble the opposition. They were weak in the field and didn’t take wickets. The opening stand between Taylor and Chakabva looked the only respectable effort from the Zimbabwe team.

The minnows chose to field on winning the toss. And, it was a terrible call by Chigumbura as they were unable to put any pressure on the Lankans and get a breakthrough until the 45th over! Dilshan and Tharanga punished the opposition ruthlessly. They played exquisite strokes – slashing through point, pulling through square and driving through the covers whenever they had an opportunity.  Thranga was dismissed for 133 runs and Dilshan soon followed him making 144 runs. The Lankans failed to capitalize the last five overs as they kept on losing wickets during the period. But, they managed to put up a massive score of 327 runs for the loss of 6 wickets.

The game was almost in the Lankans bag. It was real challenging and uphill task to chase down 328 runs! But, Taylor and Chakbava, the two Zimbabwe openers had different plans in their head. They looked inspired from the Ireland chase against the English and took the attack over a bit erratic Lankan bowling attack. B.Taylor in particular looked very aggressive, flicking & chipping in Malinga for boundaries. And, the finest thing about his innings was using touch and timing rather than power! He completed his fifty in just 39 balls.

At this point one would have thought game on-Lets stick to the TV screens! But, in the 20th over, came the spin genius –Muralidharan, who spun a dusra on to R.Chakabva’s off-stump and culminated the belligerent opening stand.Taibu came in and went along edging one to Sangakkara. Soon, Taylor also chipped against the dazzling Angelo Mathews on a slower ball to find Jayawardene at mid-wicket.

And, the match looked one sided from here on. Dilshan and Muralitharan on the subcontinent’s turning wicket seemed too hot to handle for the Zimbabwe batsmen. They struggled and soon collapsed at 188 runs in the 39th over.

Amongst the SL bowlers, it was an off-day for the speedster Malinga. He failed to take a wicket and was costliest of all Lankan bowlers, conceding 51 runs of 8 overs.

It seemed to be a good opener’s day-The four openers accumulated 398 runs which is the highest in an ODI ever! They surpassed the previous 368 run record scored in the SL and English match in 2006.

Now, Lankans are officially into the quarters. And, well they are a team to watch out for in this open world cup! They are the ones who maintain a low-profile and suddenly start flourishing from nowhere!

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Chintan Zalani

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Hello! I am Chintan Zalani from Ujjain currently pursuing an integrated BE + Msc degree from BITS-Pilani Goa Campus. Currently I am searching for my career interest and discovering myself. I am a very ambitious and optimistic guy. I have always believed that I had the potential to confront and conquer the supreme be it any battlefield. My passion is winning and I give my best shot to whatever I choose to do. I love to play, watch and write about sports. I have been the captain of my team in intra-school competitions like Kho-Kho and Cricket. I also have won prizes in athletic events and speech competitions at school. TheSportsmirror gives me an inordinate podium to show my knack for writing. At the same time it will be also serving me by upgrading and developing my linguistic skills. Albeit, I am here to stay only for 3 months but I will put in best efforts to keep your readers engrossed! So, Folks gear up;)

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