Sri Lanka struggle as England bowlers dominate
England produced another devastating display in the field restricting Sri Lanka to a total of just 128-6 after Kumar Sangakkara won the toss and decided to bat first.
Spinner’s Graeme Swann and Michael Yardy were the stand out bowlers once against bowling their 8 overs of spin through the middle of the innings conceded just 41 runs to leave Sri Lanka 80-4 with only 6 overs left.
With Sri Lanka’s top order struggerling Angelo Mathews once again lead the way with a gritty half century which helped his side set England a victory target of 127.
Having won the toss and deciding to bat Sri Lanka’s innings got off to the worst possible start as they lost three quick wickets to leave them 26-3 after 4.1 overs.
Sanath Jayasuriya’s disappointing tournament continued after he was caught by Paul Collingwood at second slip. Having played in all 6 games for Sri Lanka the 40 year old has only scored 15 runs and looked a shadow of his former self when he edge a delivery from Ryan Sidebottom at the start of the second over.
With Jayasuriya gone Tillakaratne Dilshan showed his intent by smashing Sidebottom for a boundary through the covers from the first ball he faced but he didn’t last long at the crease as England started to increase the pressure on Sri Lanka.
Dilshan’s (9) attacking nature would in the end be his downfall; having attacked every delivery he faced Dilshan played one shot to many and top edged a delivery from Tim Bresnan into the covers which was caught by Luke Wright.
With bounce and seam movement the Sri Lankan’s were struggling having lost two wickets after Kumar Sangakkara won the toss and decided to bat first.
England’s perfect start was completed by Stuart Broad who dismissed danger man Mahela Jayawardene (10) who nicked a rising delivery through to wicket keeper Craig Kieswetter to leave a shell shocked Sri Lanka 26-3.
Sangakkara was joined at the crease by Angelo Mathews with last years beaten finalists facing an up hill task to reach Sunday’s final in Bridgetown.
With the completion of the power play overs Collingwood brought his spinners into the attack. As they have done throughout the tournament Graeme Swann and Michael Yardy bowled 8 straight overs of spin conceding just 41 runs.
With the pressure mounting Swann struck almost right away picking up the wicket of Sangakkara (16) at the end of his second over with a flighted delivery which dipped on the Sri Lanka skipper at the last second which meant Sangakkara couldn’t get the power onto the ball enabling Kevin Pieterson to take an easy catch out on the boundary to leave Sri Lanka 47-4.
With Swann and Yardy out of the attack; England managed to maintain their strangle hold over the batsman with Broad and Sidebottom taking all the pace off the ball to leave Chamara Kapugedera and Angelo Mathews struggling to gain any momentum as the run rate dipped to 5.6.
With runs hard to find Kapugedera (16) tried one frustrated slog to many and with no pace on the delivery the ball fell into the hands of Bresnan at mid off to give the impressive Broad his second wicket of the innings.
With Kapugedera back in the dugout Mathews (58) was joined at the crease by Thissara Perera with Sri Lanka in a big hole having only scored 93 runs from 16.3 overs.
With their backs against the wall the pair responded with a vital partnership of 32 runs which gave Sri Lanka a small amount of momentum going into England’s innings.