Written by Lahiru Fernando
18 Mar, 2015 | 3:10 pm
The first quarter final match of the cricket World Cup 2015 got underway earlier at the Sydney Cricket Ground early Wednesday. Sri Lanka clashed head on with South Africa on the knockout stage.
Sri Lanka won the toss and elected to bat first, getting off to a very slow start after losing the wickets of both openers, Kusal Perera and TM Dilshan early on in the innings.
Kusal Perera struggled to make contact with the ball, edging it several times until he found the man at slip to be dismissed for just three runs. Dilshan too found the edge, handing it to Faf du Plessis at second slip to be dismissed for a duck just one run after Kusal’s dismissal.
Kumar Sangakkara and Lahiru Thirimanna put up a 65-run partnership before Thirimanna was dismissed for 41 runs by Imran Tahir as Sangakkara soldiered on slowly.
Mahela Jayawardene was the next victim of Tahir, presenting a simple catch to Du Plessis at short mid-wicket. Skipper Angelo Mathews posted a slow 19 runs before being dismissed by JP Dumini on his last ball of the over and the next few wickets fell at a stretch, giving Dumini a hat-trick as he bagged the next two wickets on the first two balls of his next over.
Sangakkara, who slowly soldiered on with just three boundaries to get 45 runs off 96 balls was dismissed as the 8th wicket as he found deep third man, going for a well struck cut, but failing to find the gap.
As though to salute in acknowledgement of the magnificent part the Sri Lankan veteran has played during his fantastic international career, the heavens opened up just as Sangakkara began to walk off his crease following the dismissal.
Following a short pause caused by rain, the match resumed with Malinga coming in to accompany Dushmantha Chameera. Malinga and Chameera could only get 6 as a pair as Malinga was caught at cover, giving Tahir his fourth wicket. Sri Lanka was all out for 133 runs in just 37.2 overs.
For the Proteas, Pacers Dale Steyn, Kyle Abbott and Morne Morkel claimed a wicket each as the spinner duo JP Duminy and Tahir ran through the Lankan batting line-up to bag the rest. Dumini claimed three wickets for his hat-trick as Tahir claimed 4.
South Africa began their reply to Sri Lanka’s 133 a short while ago. Stay tuned with the Newsfirst.lk Facebook page and Twitter page for updates on every two overs.
South Africa began their reply to Sri Lanka’s 133 as Hashim Amla and Quinton de Kock opened the play for the Proteas
The duo opened with a 40 run partnership which ended as Lasith Malinga picked up the wicket of Amla, delivering a short ball which was dispatched by Amla towards deep third man, into the safe hands of Nuwan Kulasekara.
de Kock together with Faf du Plessis saw the innings through to seal the victory for South Africa as the duo scored an unbeaten 94 runs together. Quinton de Kock scored 78 runs in just 57 deliveries.
South Africa cruised to victory by nine wickets and 192 deliveries to go, showing the way out for Sri Lanka as they proceed to the Semi Final which will be played on the 24th of March against the winners of the New Zealand vs West Indies quarter final match.
The loss for Sri Lanka also means the end of the 2015 World Cup for the team and the end of the line for two veterans who had illustrious careers and are considered as Legends of the game. The two are non other than the dynamic duo of Sri Lankan cricket, Kumar Sangakkara and Mahela Jayawardena. The two centurions made the announcement prior to the World Cup that the end of this tournament will also mark the end of their career as they have decided to retire from ODIs. The veterans retired from the T20 format of the game at the end of the T20 World Cup which was held in Bangladesh last year.
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