Ben Stokes 42 n.o. calms England to 4-wicket win and semi finals in face of Sri Lanka’s fight back
Sri Lanka lost to England by 4 wickets but not before giving their opponents a scare when they lost 6 wickets in the space of 65 balls at the Sydney Cricket Ground yesterday. The Lankans got off to a flying start of 67 for 1 off just 7 overs in their final Group 1 match with Pathum Nissanka carving a cameo 67 off 45 balls showcased by 5 sixes and 2 boundaries
as England got home and to the semi finals with 2 balls to spare. Only two others – Kusal Mendis 18 off and Bhanuka Rajapaksa 22 reached double figures as England’s Mark Wood topped the bowling taking 3 for 18 and Ben Stokes, Chris Woakes and Adil Rashid 1 each. England coasted to 144 for 6 winning with 2 balls to spare but not before going through anxious moments losing 6 wickets for 54 in the space of 65 balls as the Lankan trio of Wanindu Hasaranga de Silva 2 for 23 and Lahiru Kumara and Dhananjaya de Silva 1 for 24 respectively had threatened England’s progress. But Ben Stokes 42 off 36 with just the two boundaries calmed the innings to taking the side to the decisive last four. after openers Alex Hales 47 off 30 (7×4, 1×6) and Jos Buttler 28 off 23 (2×4, 1×6)-had posted 75 for the first wicket off 8 overs.
Adil Rashid, took the Player of the Match award in leading England’s fight back that was the solitary. prize.wicket of Pathum Nissanka whom he had caught by C.I. Jordan though Mark Wood was their chief wicket taker with 3 for 26., However, Sri Lanka’s Wanindu Hasaranga de Silva had the consolation of heading the T20 World Cup bowling standings with 15 wickets.
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