With centuries from veterans Tillakaratne Dilshan and Kumar Sangakkara, Sri Lanka banished Bangladesh by 92 runs in World Cup match at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) on Thursday.
The 1996 edition champions reached a mammoth 332 for the loss of only one wicket. In reply, Bangladesh were bowled out for 240 in only 47 overs. With the win, the Lankans stepped up to second place in the Pool A standings behind New Zealand.
Incredibly, Sri Lanka scored the monumental total with just one six in their innings, coming from the bat of Sangakkara (105 not out), who scored his 22nd hundred and also his fastest in his 400th One-Day International (ODI). The left-hander became the fourth batsman in history to reach 400 ODIs, behind Sachin Tendulkar (463), Sanath Jayasurya (445) and Mahela Jayawardene (444).
However, Dilshan, who scored his 21st century and highest ODI score, played the anchor’s knock with an unbeaten innings of 161, which is now also the highest individual score by a Sri Lankan in the World Cup, going past the legendary Aravinda de Silva’s 145, which he scored against Kenya in 1996. This is also the highest individual score without a sixer in ODIs.
The Sri Lanka batsmen pulverised the Bangladeshi bowlers right from the start, who appeared totally clueless on how to tackle the experienced Lankan line-up.
To add salt to the wounds, Bangladesh’s slip-shod fielding also did not help. Their ground fielding, backing-up and catching was horrendous and did not look as if they were a Test playing nation.
It was a perfect toss to win as Sri Lanka openers Lahiru Thirimanne (52) and Dilshan started strongly to strike a 122-run first wicket partnership.
Thirimanne’s wicket was the only success for Bangladesh as it was a pure Sri Lanka show thereon as Dilshan and Sangakkara put together an unbeaten 210-run partnership which also turned out to be Sri Lanka’s highest second wicket ODI partnership, breaking their own record of 200 against India in 2012.
Dilshan hammered 22 boundaries in his 146-ball knock while Sangakkara smashed 13 fours and the lone six in his 76-ball innings.
The Bangladeshi bowlers did not have much to boast about as they gave away 14 extras to skipper Mashrafe Mortaza’s dismay.
The Bangladeshi batsmen got starts but could not convert them into big scores, thanks to some lethal pace from Lasith Malinga, who rattled the top-order. In fact the highest scorers came lower down the order from Sabbir Rahman (53) and all-rounder Shakib Al Hasan (46).
But by then it was a little too late for Bangladesh.
Malinga took consecutive wickets to finish the Bangladesh innings and end with figures of 3/35 from his nine overs.
Brief scores: Sri Lanka 332/1 in 50 overs (Tillakaratne Dilshan 161 not out, Kumar Sangakkara 105 not out) vs Bangladesh 240 in 47 overs (Sabbir Rahman 53, Shakib Al Hasan 46; Lasith Malinga 3-35).IANS