Captain Cook Helps The Poms Level Series




Alistair Cook answered his critics in dazzling fashion as he scored a quickfire 95 to lead England’s run chase and help them level the series. England got to their target of 171 in only 23.5 overs after Anderson and Co. took advantage of the overcast conditions to remove the Lankan top-order for next to nothing as England go the deciding match at Manchester with the scoreline reading 2-2.

Captain Cook helps the Poms level series

Captain Cook helps the Poms level series

England won the toss and unsurprisingly decided to field as the bowlers looked to thrive in helpful conditions. Anderson struck the first blow and it took only five balls for him to find the edge of Dilshan’s bat. Bresnan complimented him from the other end as Jayawardene flirted with an away going delivery and offered Trott an easy catch at slip. Chandimal, hero from the previous match, got a ball nipping back in as he was caught right in front and was gone without disturbing the scorers. Anderson continued his fabulous spell by getting rid of Kandamby as Sri Lanka slipped to 20/4 in the ninth over as Sangakkara watched helplessly from the other end. Suraj Randiv was promoted to see out the new ball and was dismissed by Broad after hanging around a while. It was a matter of time before England would run through Sri Lanka!

But there was the former captain Sangakkara yet to be dismissed. He found an able ally in Angelo Mathews as the duo stitched together a 72 run partnership to save Lanka the ignominy of being dismissed below 100. When Bresnan finally got rid of Mathews for 39, Sri Lanka had reached 129. Dernbach completed the remaining formalities as Sangakkara fell last for a well compiled 75 as Sri Lanka managed 174.

With clouds hovering over the grounds, Cook started off with a hat trick of boundaries of Kulasekara and England were off and running. Malinga offered Cook a long hop before Kulasekara leaked 15 more runs in his third over, Keiswetter joining the act this time. Three more boundaries of Lakmal gave Cook his half century of 37 balls while rain interrupted play for 20 minutes and England were now chasing 171 in 48 overs. The break did not break England’s momentum in any way as Keiswetter slog swept Randiv to reach another half century. It was a matter of time thereon as Cook and Keiswetter reached the target with 145 balls to spare, Cook declined the opportunity to reach a century as Keiswetter took control of the innings in the final stages helping himself to a well deserved 72.

Both teams now move to Manchester with the scorelines level but the momentum would be with England and Sri Lanka would need a much improved performance from their batsmen and bowlers alike if they are to go on and win the series.

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Monish Menon

Author:

Hi, I am Monish Menon from Hyderabad and currently working at Franklin Templeton Investments as a Compliance Business Analyst. Sport has always been my passion since I was a kid and I invest all my non-existent free time by watching, playing, writing and analyzing various sporting events across the world. Apart from being a diehard Manchester United fan and a Ferrari supporter, I believe that Roger Federer is still the best tennis player and Sachin Tendulkar is God. I play club cricket and I also am a part of my organization’s cricket and football squad. Being such a sports fanatic, writing about it is something that came naturally to me and I am glad that I got an opportunity through thesportsmirror.com to share my thoughts with the rest of the world. For other articles written by me, you can visit my blog at www.monishmenon.wordpress.com

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