Sri Lanka beat UAE by 142 runs
Spinner Ajantha Mendis took five wickets to help Sri Lanka beat an inexperienced United Arab Emirates team by 142 runs on Thursday in the last Group A match of the Asia Cup.cricket Updated: Jun 26, 2008 23:18 IST
Unorthodox spinner Ajantha Mendis took five wickets to help Sri Lanka beat an inexperienced United Arab Emirates team by 142 runs on Thursday in the last Group A match of the Asia Cup.
Sri Lanka made 290-9 off its 50 overs before Mendis spun out UAE for 148 in 36.3 overs with a five-wicket burst.
UAE was briefly in the hunt when opening batsman Amjad Ali hit 12 boundaries in his 79-ball innings of 77 before wickets fell with regular intervals once Mendis came on to bowl.
Captain Saqib Ali (19) and Indika Batuwitarachchi (14) were the only other UAE batsmen to cross the double-figure mark as UAE lost its last eight wickets for just 48 runs.
The victory helped defending champion Sri Lanka stay unbeaten in Group A. Bangladesh, which lost to Sri Lanka, also qualified for the Super Stage from the same group after an easy win over UAE in a previous group match.
UAE made a stunning start after Sri Lanka won the toss and elected to bat first, with medium-fast Zahid Shah trapping Kumar Sangakkara lbw for a duck with his sixth delivery of the match. But Sri Lanka's opening batsman Mahela Udawatte, who replaced the experienced Sanath Jayasuriya, scored 67 off 74 balls while Mahela Jayawardene hit nine boundaries in his 43-ball 61 before he was run out.
Off-spinner Mohammad Tauqir claimed the wickets of Chamara Kapugedera (11) and Chamara Silva (6) in his successive overs as Sri Lanka slipped to 142-4.
Udawatte departed in the 28th over with the score on 189 when he was well caught by Tauqir.
Kaushal Weeraratne (40) and Nuwan Kulasekara (38) made valuable late contributions that helped Sri Lanka recover from its middle-order struggles.
Sri Lanka, which thrashed Bangladesh by 131 runs Wednesday, rested three of its key players _ Muttiah Muralitharan, Chaminda Vaas and Jayasuriya.
They were replaced by Udawatte, Weeraratne and Thilan Thushara. The United Arab Emirates, which lost its first group game against Bangladesh by 96 runs, also made three changes for its last group match.
Amjad Javed, Shadeep Silva and Vikrant Shetty made way for Alavi Shukri, Aman Ali and Nizel Fernandez.
Shah had the best performance of UAE bowlers with 3-49, while Fahad Al Hashmi (2-39) and Tauqir (2-47) also chipped in with two wickets apiece.