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NZ sneak past SL in a close tie

india Updated: Jun 11, 2013 11:53 IST
Champions trophy

New Zealand bowlers stuck to a disciplined line to skittle out Sri Lanka for a paltry 138 inside 38 overs, in a group A league encounter of the ICC Champions Trophy in Cardiff on Sunday.

Barring former skipper Kumar Sangakkara who stood tall amid ruins, scoring 68 off 87 balls with eight boundaries, the other batsmen were clueless against controlled seam bowling by seasoned Kyle Mills (2/14) and young left-arm seamer Mitchell McClenaghan (4/43).

Spinners Daniel Vettori (1/16) and offie Nathan McCullum (2/23) also complemented the pacers well as Sri Lanka lost wickets at regular intervals.

Such was the dismal show of the batsmen that as many as eight out of 11 batsmen failed to reach double figures.

As Sangakkara waged a lone battle, he could never get a reliable partner at the other end, to put up a semblance of a fight.

It was skipper Brendon McCullum's inspirational catch in the slips off the very first delivery of the match that set the tone. Kusal Perera (0) flashed hard at an outgoing delivery from Mills as McCullum pulled off a stunner in the slip cordon.

Tillakaratne Dilshan (20) hit a few boundaries before he was cleaned up by McClenaghan with a fuller delivery.

Their miseries compounded when Mahela Jayawardene (4) padded an arm ball from Vettori, while talented Dinesh Chandimal (0) got an inside edge off Mills onto his stumps.

At 34 for four, Angelo Mathews (9) joined Sangakkara and the duo added 31 runs before the shipper shuffled excessively to lose his leg-stump off McClenaghan.

The other notable partnership was between Sangakkara and Thisara Perera (15) for the seventh wicket that yielded 36 runs.

Sangakkara hit some exquisite shots as he completed his 50 off 70 balls with five boundaries. He was the eighth batsmen to be out as he tried to hit McCullum against the turn, and offered a simple catch to Kane Williamson at short third man.

Earlier, Sri Lanka had won the toss and opted to bat first.

New Zealand: Luke Ronchi, Martin Guptill, Kane Williamson, Ross Taylor, Brendon McCullum (captain), James Franklin, Nathan McCullum, Daniel Vettori, Tim Southee, Kyle Mills, Mitchell McCleanaghan.

Sri Lanka: Kusal Perera, Tillakaratne Dilshan, Kumar Sangakkara, Mahela Jayawardene, Dinesh Chandimal, Angelo Mathews (captain), Lahiru Thirimanne, Thisara Perera, Rangana Herath, Shaminda Eranga, Lasith Malinga.