Exciting cricket took place in Columbo RPS in the day/night ICC Cricket World Cup 2011 match between Pakistan and Sri Lanka on Saturday 26th February 2011.
Pakistan set Sri Lanka a total of 277 for 7 from their 50 overs, to which Sri Lanka could only manage 266 for 9 in response, which meant that Pakistan won by 11 runs.
The win came down to two excellent Pakistan performances, as Shahid Afridi, Pakistan’s captain, excelled with the ball once again in this tournament – he took 4 for 34 off his 10 overs – and Misbah-ul-Haq added a vital 83 Not Out with the bat.
Pakistan won the toss, and elected to bat, and were soon off to good start as runs came at a good rate, though Sri Lanka kept themselves in touch by producing regular wickets, to reduce their rivals to 105 for 3. With the match finely balanced, Misbah-ul-Haq (83 Not Out) and Younus Khan (72) did the main damage of the innings, by putting on a partnership of 108 runs for the fourth wicket.
Five overs remained for a couple of quick-scoring cameo appearances from U Akmal (10 from 15 deliveries) and Shahid Afridi (16 from 12 deliveries) thanks to the steady ship Khan and Misbah had set up.
Those runs would later prove vital, as Sri Lanka, despite getting off to a great start – putting on 76 runs without loss – could not quite get the run rate up in the middle part of the innings.
A flurry of wickets arrived, once Tharanga (33) was caught by Shahid Afridi from the bowling of Mohammad Hafeez, before the captain took over the wicket taking, by bowling the other opening batsman, Dilshan, on 41 runs.
When Jayawardene (2), who was bowled by Shoaib Akhtar, was quickly followed into the pavilion by Samaraweera (1), stumped by K Akmal from the bowling of Afridi, Sri Lanka had fallen to 96 for 4 wickets.
Sangakkara (49) and Silva (57) then put on an important partnership of 73 runs, which looked to be inching Sri Lanka towards the finishing line, before Shahid Afridi got Sangakkara one short of a deserved half century – the catch was taken by Shehzad.
The same combination took out Mathews (18) and put Sri Lanka on 209 for 6 wickets, with only a handful of overs remaining, and the run-rate required creeping ever higher.
When Perera (8) – bowled Shoaib Akhtar – was followed just one run later by Silva (57) – stumped K Akmal bowled Rehman, the task seemed to become much sterner.
However, Kulasekara had a good go at saving the day for Sri Lanka, in knocking up a super-fast 24 runs – featuring one six and two fours, from just 14 deliveries. When he was dismissed, caught U Akmal, from the bowling of Gul, Sri Lanka appeared to be – and were indeed – out of batting options.
Time ran out for Sri Lanka, with the required score just 11 runs away when the 50 over point arrived.
Pakistan will be thankful, once again, to their captain Shahid Afridi, who was absolutely instrumental to their success today: his 16 runs and 4 wickets proved to be very much the difference between winning and losing this entertaining cricket match.
Sri Lanka will be bitterly disappointed to have lost this game, having come so close, but must console themselves with the fact that, but for one very good performance from one of the world’s best, they could easily have got over the line today.
Sri Lanka v Pakistan – ICC Cricket World Cup 2011 Scorecard
|Pakistan 1st Innings||Runs||Balls||4s||6s|
|Shehzad||c Sangakkara||b Perera||13||23||2||0|
|Mohammad Hafeez||run out (Muralitharan)||32||31||4||1|
|K Akmal||st Sangakkara||b Herath||39||48||5||0|
|Younus Khan||c M Jayawardene||b Herath||72||76||4||0|
|U Akmal||c Dilshan||b Muralitharan||10||15||1||0|
|Shahid Afridi||c Dilshan||b Mathews||16||12||3||0|
|Razzaq||c Sub||b Perera||3||4||0||0|
|Total||for 7||277||(50.0 ovs)|
|Sri Lanka Bowlers||O||M||R||W|
|Sri Lanka 1st Innings||Runs||Balls||4s||6s|
|Tharanga||c Shahid Afridi||b Mohammad Hafeez||33||43||6||0|
|Dilshan||b Shahid Afridi||41||55||5||0|
|Sangakkara||c Shehzad||b Shahid Afridi||49||61||2||1|
|M Jayawardene||b Shoaib Akhtar||2||10||0||0|
|Samaraweera||st K Akmal||b Shahid Afridi||1||4||0||0|
|Silva||st K Akmal||b Rehman||57||78||5||0|
|Mathews||c Shehzad||b Shahid Afridi||18||20||2||0|
|Perera||b Shoaib Akhtar||8||6||1||0|
|Kulasekara||c U Akmal||b Gul||24||14||2||1|
|Extras||2nb 16w 1b 10lb||29|
|Total||for 9||266||(50.0 ovs)|