All rounder Thisara saves SL blushes
All Round efforts by Thisara Perera together with sensible batting by skipper Dinesh Chandimal saved Sri Lanka blushes as Sri Lanka narrowly managed to beat Zimbabwe by five wickets in the fourth one-day international of the tri-nations tournament in Dhaka on Sunday.
In a low scoring thriller Sri Lanka lost five wickets and took 44.5 overs to complete a modest tally of 198 by Zimbabwe where Thisara Perera (39n.o) and Dinesh Chandimal (38 n.o.) had to put up an unbeaten 57 runs for the sixth wicket to complete the win after they were four down for 117 at one stage.
Perera smashed three sixes and a four in his 26 delivery 39 runs after claiming four wickets with the ball while Chandimal hung in there for 71 deliveries adding 38 making sure SL did not lose any more wickets.
Chasing modest target of 199 runs Sri Lanka openers found it hard to deal with pace and bounce but managed to dig in their for 9 overs before Upul Tharanga was uneasy for his 34 ball 17 runs.
Once again it was opener Kusal Janith Perera who kept the scoreboard ticking for islanders adding four fours and a six in his 57 delivery inning but he too was visibly strugglling with a side pain and eventually got out one run short of his second half century in the series.
Perera and Kusal Mendis (36) added 70 runs for the second wicket where it seemed Sri Lanka will go over the line without much trouble but paceman Blessing Muzarabani struck in quick session to remove both set batsmen Perera and Mendis followed by Niroshan Dickwella leaving SL suddenly four down for 117 in the 26th over after been 103-1 four overs earlier.
Asela Gunaratne once again failed to impress with the bat for the third consecutive time in the series as he went for just nine runs and it was all down for skipper Dinesh Chandimal and man in form Thisara Perera to do the finishing job.
Earlier, Thisara Perera led an inspired Sri Lankan bowling attack to help bowl out Zimbabwe for 198.
Perera claimed four wickets with his medium-pace as Zimbabwe survived 44 overs after electing to bat first.
Wicketkeeper-batsman Brendan Taylor top-scored with 58.
Perera, who ran through the Zimbabwe top-order including Taylor's wicket, was ably supported by fellow paceman Nuwan Pradeep (3-28).
Left-arm wrist spinner Lakshan Sandakan took wickets before Pradeep wiped off the Zimbabwe tail including the prized wicket of skipper Graeme Cremer for 34.
H. Masakadza c Tharanga b Perera 20
S. Mire c Dickwella b Perera 21
C. Ervine c Tharanga b Perera 02
B. Taylor c Tharanga b Perera 58
S. Raza c Mendis b Sandakan 09
M. Waller c Dickwella b Sandakan 24
P. Moor run out 00
G. Cremer b Pradeep 34
K. Jarvis b Pradeep 05
T. Chatara not out 02
B. Musarabani b Pradeep 00
Extras (lb-8, w-15) 23
Total (all out, 44 overs) 198
Fall: 1/44, 2/49, 3/56, 4/73, 5/139, 6/140, 7/171, 8/191, 9/198.
Bowling: S. Lakmal 7-0-23-0, P. Fernando 8-2-28-3, T. Perera 8-0-33-4, A. Dananjaya 10-0-45-0, L. Sandakan 10-0-57-2, A. Gunaratne 1-0-4-0.
K. Perera c sub (Murray) b Muzarabani 49
U. Tharanga b Chatara 17
K. Mendis b Muzarabani 36
N. Dickwella c sub (Murray) b Muzarabai 07
D. Chandimal not out 38
A. Gunaratne c sub (Murray) b Jarvis 09
T. Perera not out 39
Extras (lb-3, nb-1, w-3) 07
Total (5 wkts. 44.5 overs) 202
Fall: 1/33, 2/103, 3/110, 4/117, 5-145,
Bowling: K. Jarvis 9-0-34-1, T. Chatara 9.5-1-40-1, B. Muzarabani 10-0-52-3, S. Raza 7-0-44-0, G. Cremer 9-0-29-0.
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