• Tuesday, May 28, 2024


Sri Lanka heap more misery on England with big win

With four losses in five matches, England now are in danger of missing out on a semi-final spot

Adil Rashid, Jonny Bairstow and Jos Buttler of England cut dejected figures following the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup match between England and Sri Lanka at M Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bangalore on October 26, 2023. (Photo by Gareth Copley/Getty Images)

By: Chandrashekar Bhat

SRI LANKA breathed life into their World Cup campaign and left England in increasing danger of missing out on a semi-final spot after crushing the defending champions by eight wickets in a low-scoring match on Thursday (26).

Chasing a modest 157 for only their second win, Sri Lanka overcame the loss of two early wickets before Pathum Nissanka (77 not out) and Sadeera Samarawickrama (65 not out) got them across the finish line in 25.4 overs.

They earlier restricted England to a below-par 156 all out in 33.2 overs in the must-win encounter between the tournament’s stragglers, with only Ben Stokes offering some resistance in an otherwise dismal batting display.

Stokes (43) took the attack to Sri Lanka on a dry wicket at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bengaluru after England’s middle-order collapsed in the face of some incisive bowling, but he holed out to Dushan Hemantha in the deep off Lahiru Kumara (3-35) in the 31st over.

England enjoyed an early slice of luck after Jos Buttler won the toss and opted to bat as Jonny Bairstow (30) survived an lbw chance when Sri Lanka failed to review, but he did not build on his breezy start and gifted his wicket to Kasun Rajitha (2-36).

Sri Lanka had put the brakes on England’s scoring following the powerplay as veteran Angelo Mathews (2-14) dismissed opener Dawid Malan (28) and then helped run out Joe Root before Kumara struck twice to leave the holders in tatters at 85-5.

Mathews, called in to play in his fourth World Cup as an injury replacement for Matheesha Pathirana, snared Moeen Ali in his second spell while Chris Woakes fell to Rajitha after a low diving catch by Samarawickrama.

Sri Lanka, who came into the contest with the same record as England – three losses in four matches – then ripped through the tail to ensure the lowest all-out total in Bengaluru and lay the platform for a comprehensive victory.


Related Stories


Mrunal Thakur on Dhamaka, experience of working with Kartik Aaryan,…
Nushrratt Bharuccha on Chhorii, pressure of comparison with Lapachhapi, upcoming…
Abhimanyu Dassani on Meenakshi Sundareshwar, how his mom Bhagyashree reacted…