Super over win for Sri Lanka
KANDY – Sri Lanka created a thrilling climax to the start of the Super Eights with an exciting super over victory over New Zealand in the ICC World Twenty20 at the Pallekele International Stadium yesterday.
The Sri Lankans were cruising at one stage as they chased 174 for seven made by the Black Caps, who won the toss and chose to bat.
But the New Zealand bowlers tightened the screws from the 12th over, and suddenly Sri Lanka needed eight runs from the last over and eventually one to win from the last ball.
Lahiru Thirimanna hurriedly ran a leg-bye and after a ten-minute TV review, the umpire judged that he was run out and the scores were tied, with Sri Lanka 174-6 in their 20 overs.
There was some confusion as the teams shook hands, not knowing the run out was effected, and West Indies and England teams were on the field having already started their warm-up for the second match. They now had to remove themselves for the match between the hosts and New Zealand to resume before 30 000 screaming fans.
Sri Lanka made 13 for one, with captain Mahale Jayawardene run out cheaply while Thilsara Perera and Tilikaratne Dilshan ended the eliminator over delivered by Tim Southee.
Predictably, New Zealand used Brendon McCullum and Martin Guptil to open as Lasith Malinga bowled.
They found great difficulty in getting away the fast, direct stuff of Malinga and as a wicket fell they needed an impossible eight runs from the last ball.
Earlier, Sri Lanka did well to restrict New Zealand, who were led by Rob Nicol with a swashbuckling 58, but Dilshan with 76 and the captain with 44 led an early response that seemed certain to carry them home.
They made it in the end, but with plenty drama involved.