Saturday, July 20, 2024

No upset in warm-ups

All the Test teams involved in yesterday’s round of World Cup warm-up matches, with the probable exception of New Zealand, came out on top against their less fancied rivals.
Sri Lanka, South Africa and West Indies defeated the Netherlands, Zimbabwe and Kenya respectively by convincing margins, while New Zealand were still trying to put away Ireland when this report was filed.
Sri Lanka put up a powerful batting display at the Sinhalese Sports Club ground in Colombo, piling on 351 for the loss of five wickets against the minnows. Opener Tillakaratne Dilshan punished the Netherlands attack to the tune of a run-a-ball 78, while Chamara Kapugedera and Chamara Silva finished the innings off with blazing half-centuries. Then Dilhara Fernando took four wickets to speed up Netherlands’ demise as the Europeans were shot out for 195, winning by 156 runs.
At the MA Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai, South Africa put up a similarly clinical display against neighbours Zimbabwe. Fast bowler Morne Morkel and new leg-spinner Imran Tahir picked up three wickets apiece as Zimbabwe were bowled out for 152 inside 42 overs. South Africa then scored at a furious pace as to overtake the total in the 24th over for the loss of two wickets, with Jacques Kallis top-scoring with 49 not out.
The West Indies were in trouble early on against Kenya as they lost four wickets for sixty-five runs at the Premadasa Stadium in Colombo. Ramnaresh Sarwan and Dwayne Bravo then combined to rescue the Caribbean side, with Sarwan top-scoring with 123, as West Indies reached 253 for eight. Kenya were then skittled out for 192 with Windies fast bowler Andre Russel snaring four wickets, hand a 61-run victory.
Ireland reached 233 for six on completion of the 42nd over against the Kiwis, chasing 311. Earlier Martin Guptill struck 130 in New Zealand’s innings to take the total to a strong position, but an upset was a distinct possibility when this report was filed.
SRI LANKA: 351 for five (Dilshan 78, Samaraweera 60, Silva 54; Bukhari 2-52, Seelar 1-44)
NETHERLANDS: 195 all out in 47.3 overs (de Grooth 76, Zuiderent 38; Fernando 4-34, Perera 2-16)
Result: Sri Lanka won by 156 runs.
ZIMBABWE: 152 all out in 41.5 overs (Taylor 40, Williams 35; Morkel 3-16, Tahir 3-35)
SOUTH AFRICA: 153 for 2 in 23.3 overs (Kallis 49 not out, Amla 45, Smith 41; Price 1-19)
Result: South Africa won by 8 wickets.
WEST INDIES: 253 for 8 (Sarwan 123, Bravo 54; Odoyo 3-34)
KENYA: 192 all out in 45.3 overs (Obuya 68, Waters 43; Russell 4-43, Roach 3-23)
Result: West Indies won by 61 runs.

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