Monday, July 22
sri lanka wc

Sri Lanka concludes the ODI World Cup qualifier with an impeccable record, as their bowlers orchestrate a significant victory in the final match.

Netherlands crumbled for a mere 105 runs, even after being at a precarious 49 for 6 during their chase of a relatively modest target.

Sri Lanka displayed their dominance in a match that held no significance in terms of qualification. Despite having already secured their spot in the 2023 ODI World Cup, Sri Lanka showcased their determination by defeating Netherlands by a convincing margin of 128 runs in the qualifier final.

Although Sri Lanka suffered a late batting collapse, losing their final seven wickets for just 53 runs, their bowlers had already decimated the Netherlands batting lineup even before their chase began. This comprehensive victory highlighted Sri Lanka’s unwavering focus and ensured they left a lasting impression on the tournament.

The early damage was inflicted by Dilshan Madushanka, who claimed three crucial wickets within the first nine overs. Wanindu Hasaranga also played his part with two wickets by the 12th over. Maheesh Theekshana then took charge, capturing four wickets to dismiss Netherlands for a mere 105 runs. This outstanding performance meant that Sri Lanka emerged victorious in the qualifying event, maintaining an unbeaten record throughout. It is worth noting that both finalists had already secured their qualification for the upcoming ODI World Cup, scheduled to take place in India later this year.

After their thrilling chase against Scotland, Netherlands chose to field first once again. Vikramjit Singh struck early in the innings, dismissing both Sri Lankan openers in quick succession. However, Kusal Mendis and Sahan Arachchige stabilized the innings and built a partnership over the next 13 overs. The scoring rate increased, and Sri Lanka asserted their dominance in the game, with the pitch offering little for the bowlers.

The Sri Lankan batters employed the sweep shot extensively, particularly against leg-spinner Saqib Zulfiqar. However, the breakthrough came when Mendis fell victim to a straight delivery, providing Netherlands with a crucial wicket.

Arachchige reached his well-deserved half-century, and Charith Asalanka’s run-a-ball 36 set Sri Lanka up for a strong finish. However, an unexpected collapse allowed Netherlands to stage a remarkable comeback into the contest.

The downfall of Sri Lanka’s innings began with a sharp catch by Logan van Beek at point, ending Arachchige’s innings. Asalanka was then run out on the following delivery. Netherlands capitalized on this breakthrough and managed to dismiss Dasun Shanaka and Dhananjaya de Silva to expose Sri Lanka’s tail. Only a quick cameo from Hasaranga helped Sri Lanka cross the 200-run mark. However, a flurry of wickets towards the end restricted them, and they finished with a total of 233 runs to defend.

Netherlands started their chase positively, scoring 25 runs in the first 4.3 overs. But the game changed when Vikramjit fell after carving a straight delivery to cover-point. Madushanka swiftly cleaned up Wesley Barresi, while Hasaranga trapped Teja Nidamanuru in front, further shaking Netherlands’ batting line-up. The team faced another setback when captain Scott Edwards fell victim to a careless run-out, leaving them struggling at 49 for 6.

Max O’Dowd fought valiantly to take the total closer to the three-figure mark, but Sri Lanka had already gained control of the match. Theekshana returned to dismiss O’Dowd, beating his outside edge and knocking back his off stump after a gritty 36-run partnership with van Beek. Theekshana continued to dominate, trapping the last three batsmen in front of the wickets. As a result, the World Cup-bound Netherlands were bowled out for a mere 105 runs.

These two teams will meet again in a more significant contest in India, where Netherlands’ captain Edwards will hope for an improved performance from his side.