Sri Lanka’s bowling brilliance overpowers Zimbabwe


Colombo, Jan 8, 6.50PM – Sri Lanka secured a commanding position against Zimbabwe in the second Nippon Paint One Day International Series in a thrilling encounter at R Premadasa Stadium.

The game witnessed Zimbabwe’s captain, Craig Ervine, departing at 82 runs in the 36th over due to a sharp catch by Sadeera Samarawickrama off Dushmantha Chamera. This pivotal moment set the stage for a collapse as Zimbabwe was eventually bowled out for 208 runs in 44.4 overs.

Opting to bat first after winning the toss, Zimbabwe faced early setbacks when star paceman Dilshan Madushanka dismissed Tinashe Kamunhukamwe for a first-ball duck.

Captain Ervine, alongside Joylord Gumbie, worked to stabilize the innings with a 60-run partnership for the second wicket. However, Maheesh Theekshana’s skillful bowling clean-bowled Gumbie for 30 in the 12th over, setting the tone for Zimbabwe’s struggle.

Despite a brief 53-run partnership, Theekshana’s dismissal of Milto Shumba, caught by Sahan Arachchige, reduced Zimbabwe to 114-3 at the halfway mark.

Leg spinner Jiffrey Vandersay’s introduction added to Zimbabwe’s challenges, removing star batsman Sikandar Raza for 1, caught by Janith Liyanage at gully.

As captain Ervine battled the mounting pressure, a stunning catch by Sadeera Samarawickrama off Chameera at 82 dealt a crucial blow to Zimbabwe, reducing them to 5/182. Chameera, who delivered an impressive spell, then clean-bowled Ryan Burl in the next over.

Theekshana and Vandersay continued their dominance over the tail-enders, with Theekshana emerging as the star of the day with figures of 4/31 in 9.4 overs, including a maiden over. Vandersay contributed with 2/44 in eight overs.

With a challenging target set, Sri Lanka showcased bowling excellence, placing them in a favorable position for a successful second innings.

Chief scores:

Zimbabwe 208 all out in 44.4 overs (Craig Ervine 82, Ryan Burl 31, Joylord Gumbie 30, Milton Shumba 26, Maheesh Theekshana 4/31, Dushmantha Chameera 2/44, Jeffrey Vandersay 2/47).

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