By Tahan Jansz in Dambulla - Photo By Sehan Silva
The third game of the Asia Cup 2010 got underway at the Dambulla Cricket Stadium on Friday with Sri Lanka taking on Bangladesh in what was expected to be a keenly contested match.
Bangladesh was looking to redeem themselves after a loss in their first game to India. Sri Lanka on the other hand were confident after beating Pakistan in the opener. However, after their performance against Pakistan, there was no doubt that the team needed to improve on their batting.
This they did on Friday after winning the toss and opting to bat first on what looked like a perfect batting strip. Sri Lanka got off to a perfect start with a opening partnership of 111 runs of 101 balls and in the process registering the highest partnership in the tournament so far with T.M. Dilshan scoring a quick-fire 71 of just 51 balls.
His opening partner Upul Tharanga also batted impressively and made 54 from 73 balls before being caught by Mushfiqur Rahim off the bowling of Mahmudullah. Sri Lanka kept up the momentum with skipper Kumar Sangakkara and Mahela Jayawardene, bringing up Sri Lanka’s 200 of just 209 balls. Mahela finally departed after scoring 43 from 35 balls.
Bangladesh’s mediocre bowling was not doing them any good and Sri Lanka proceeded to score runs with ease. Kumar Sangakkara was later dismissed by Shafiul Islam after scoring 52 of 69 balls.
However, a fine knock by the ever-consistent Angelo Mathews who made a brisk 42, supported by a solid knock of 37 by Chamara Kapugedera ensured that Sri Lanka reached a formidable total of 312 in their allotted 50 overs.
In reply, Bangladesh got off to a poor start losing the wicket of Imrul Kayes who made just three runs. Tamim Iqbal made a fine knock of 51 before being dismissed by a great stumping from Sangakkara off the bowling of Dilshan. Surprisingly, Dilshan was given the ball ahead of Angelo Mathews and the part time off spinner did not disappoint his skipper.
Bangladesh’s key batsman Mohammad Ashraful made a disappointing nine runs after he was ruled lbw, trying to play a reverse sweep off the bowling of Dilshan. T.M. Dilshan continued to impress with the ball and picked up his third wicket in the 25th over when Mushfiqur Rahim was stumped by Sangakkara restricting Rahim to just six runs.
Bangladesh lost their remaining four wickets in quick succession and were finally bowled out for 186 in 40 overs, giving Sri Lanka a huge 126 run win, which means Sri Lanka also claimed the bonus point.
T.M. Dilshan was adjudged man of the match for his 71 runs and three wickets.