England v Sri Lanka, T20, The Oval May 20, 2014

Thisara, Malinga script Sri Lanka win

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Play 01:08
Death bowling the difference for Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka 183 for 7 (Thisara 49, Thirimanne 40) beat England 174 for 7 (Hales 66, Malinga 3-28) by nine runs
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

The world champions, Sri Lanka, began their T20 life without Mahela Jayawardene and Kumar Sangakkara by securing a nine-run victory at The Oval as Lasith Malinga's brilliance at the death ensured Alex Hales, and England, could not repeat the grand chase they managed in Chittagong.

It was Hales' dismissal to Malinga in the 17th over by a smart slower ball which made Sri Lanka strong favourites, but with Ravi Bopara in the middle and the equation down to 28 off 12 balls it was far from impossible. Then, however, Malinga produced a pinpoint penultimate over which cost just four runs (in comparison to the equivalent in Sri Lanka's innings which cost 22) and provided the less-assured Suranga Lakmal with some breathing space. Malinga may not always appear the most involved of captains - occasionally putting himself at long-off - but knew he had his individual skills up his sleeve.

The key innings came from Thisara Perera who bludgeoned 49 off 20 deliveries having been dropped on 20 by Michael Carberry at cover. Six of Perera's next eight deliveries went to the boundary, which included him taking 22 off the 19th over, bowled by Chris Jordan, who had been on the receiving end of Carberry's error.

Thisara was prevented from reaching a half-century by some quick thinking from Harry Gurney, who was alert enough to remove a stump from the ground to complete a run-out off the final ball of the innings after Thisara's straight drive at demolished the timber. However, his late surge made the difference between Sri Lanka's eventual total of 183 and one perhaps 15 runs lower.

He was not the only Sri Lanka batsman to impress, however, and with an eye on the post Jayawardene-Sangakkara era the fluent innings of debutant Kithuruwan Vithanage and Lahiru Thirimanne bode well for the future. The pair ensured that although Sri Lanka shipped regular wickets they maintained a healthy scoring rate of around eight an over.

Hales, who hit an unbeaten 116 when these two sides met in the World T20, had only faced four balls by the start of the fourth over but then top-edged Lakmal for six before swivel-pulling him for another boundary. England's chase in Chittagong had been 0 for 2 but then Eoin Morgan helped form a crucial stand: this time Hales did not find a regular partner. When he brought up his fifty off 32 balls his partnership with Jos Buttler was beginning to motor, only for Buttler to find deep midwicket from a delivery he would have expected to send into Archbishop Tenison's School.

Carberry's day had not get any better when he carved to third man for 7 but England were actually ahead of where Sri Lanka had been after the Powerplay, on 49 for 2. Ian Bell, playing his first T20 for anyone since 2011, had begun to forge a decent tempo alongside Hales when he lofted to cover in Malinga's first over two balls after being dropped at slip. Thirimanne's error did not match Carberry's.

There was an outstanding piece of fielding to put Sri Lanka in control when Eoin Morgan mistimed a low full toss towards long-off where Lakmal took a magnificent low catch as he ran in from the boundary. It left England 85 for 4 and needing 99 off 51 balls, which proved out of reach.

Sri Lanka left little in the tank during their innings - just as it should be in T20. Tillakaratne Dilshan pulled the first ball of the match for four and then tried to 'Dilscoop' Chris Woakes' opening delivery.

Gurney was the most impressive of England's bowlers throughout the innings. On his T20I debut he removed Dilshan with his fourth delivery and his opening two overs cost just six runs to provide a measure of control. He would later return to show the value of having trained himself at death bowling in county cricket.

By and large, though, Sri Lanka kept swinging - some of it fluently and some of it less so, with an abundance of edges to third man - whereas there was still an element of England trying to consolidate for short periods.

Vithanage, who pinged five sixes against Sussex two days ago, opened his T20 account with a lofted on-drive and took three boundaries in a row off Bopara. He could have been stumped next ball but Buttler could not gather a tough take and after another boundary - reverse swept of James Tredwell - he picked out deep point.

Thirimanne was scoring at less than a run-a-ball before putting Tredwell into the stands and was beginning to kick on when, in far from the only case of a full toss getting a wicket, he swung Gurney into the deep. By then Thisara had already started to find his stride and the big finish was still to come.

Andrew McGlashan is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • POSTED BY on | May 21, 2014, 3:53 GMT

    Well played Sri Lanka. A wonderful team effort yet again. It seems that the team is getting acclimatized to the weather as well. Good to allow Lakmal to bowl at the end in matches like this where he had plenty of runs to compensate. He can learn by his mistakes now. I admired the confidence of Kithruwan in the match and Lahiru's ability to phaseout the innings. Finally hats off to Thisara and Malinga for pulling out a sound victory. All the best for the rest of the season.

  • POSTED BY John_Geo on | May 21, 2014, 3:52 GMT

    I think the biggest achievement of this game was not the fact that Sri Lanka has won but the fearless approach they applied to the game from ball 1. Victory is great but probably the death bawling (by Malinga) made the difference - so it could have gone either way. In the end it is not whether you win or lose that matters - but how you played the game.

    Sri Lanka had plenty of reasons to be over-cautious (or negative). They were outside Asia, weather was unfamiliar, toss was lost, a relatively new captain, coach stranded them at a crucial juncture, and two of the most senior players were absent. The pressure to maintain the world-champion tag can also be added to the list.

    It was heart-warming to see that it was as if none of these were in anybody's mind during the game. The fearless unperturbed approach to the game probably won the game for Sri Lanka. It is amazing what we can accomplish once we overcome our fears.

  • POSTED BY JustIPL on | May 22, 2014, 15:24 GMT

    SL are becoming the giant killers, first they beat india in world cup final under the captaincy of Malinga and then gave a beating to poms who s badly hurt them during the world cup.

  • POSTED BY JustIPL on | May 22, 2014, 15:21 GMT

    Malinga again choked the helicopters. ha ha ha.

  • POSTED BY Nerav on | May 22, 2014, 9:05 GMT

    Think England should realise that they have decent test internationals that cant play limited overs cricket or they have decent limited over cricketers who can't play international.

  • POSTED BY SDeepalV on | May 22, 2014, 7:44 GMT

    Well.. two third of big three down to Lions and bring on the 3rd - which is Aussies. Deepalv

  • POSTED BY SLCricketFan-72 on | May 21, 2014, 23:41 GMT

    @rizwan1981: You are right... But Why only BHANUKA RAJAPAKSHE ? What about Rambukwella & even Muba ? In my honest opinion, they all should be in the playing 11 to make a Real-Difference in SL cricket and lift the standard to a sky high level. Thanks to the SLC 's most valuable regeneration program, we can see a Glowing Bright Future for SL cricket, when all this is fulfilled in very near future. The only problem is, this cannot be applied to the bowlers, since they are a rare bread, that even a lookalike cannot be found within the sacred territory. Otherwise, by now, we would have seen another set of juggernauts replacing the bowlers like Malinga, Kulasekera, Lakmal etc. This could have added more Glory to the glistening futur of SL cricket..

  • POSTED BY Puffin on | May 21, 2014, 22:44 GMT

    England were too defensive and fiddled around too much. In this format you need to get on or get out, there's no time for much else. Did they think it was a test match?

  • POSTED BY neil99 on | May 21, 2014, 22:11 GMT

    The Moores regime is clueless already. Carberry in T20s; No Moeen; Tredwell - the epitome of the county journeyman; Root looking be hapless yet again; Bell wasted, when it's more important he's needed in the other formats. No Lumb.

    Oh dear, oh dear, oh dear...

  • POSTED BY yorkshire-86 on | May 21, 2014, 16:52 GMT

    Carberry is 33 if he can't catch by now he never will learn. And what is the obsession with shoehorning Bell into the limited overs formats? He is a half decent international batsmen who has earned his place in the 5 day format, but no more. Apart from that first home series with him and Cook opening, he has been a liability in ODIs, eating balls for no end product - while in T20s his inability to attack length should put him nowhere near the team. Root should open or not play - if you have watched him domestic level he is good at scoring fast in the Powerplay but tends to get bogged down later on. Lumb Root Hales Taylor Bopara Morgan Buttler Broad Jordan Tredwell Panesar.To win a T20 you need at least 2 full time spinners

  • POSTED BY on | May 21, 2014, 3:53 GMT

    Well played Sri Lanka. A wonderful team effort yet again. It seems that the team is getting acclimatized to the weather as well. Good to allow Lakmal to bowl at the end in matches like this where he had plenty of runs to compensate. He can learn by his mistakes now. I admired the confidence of Kithruwan in the match and Lahiru's ability to phaseout the innings. Finally hats off to Thisara and Malinga for pulling out a sound victory. All the best for the rest of the season.

  • POSTED BY John_Geo on | May 21, 2014, 3:52 GMT

    I think the biggest achievement of this game was not the fact that Sri Lanka has won but the fearless approach they applied to the game from ball 1. Victory is great but probably the death bawling (by Malinga) made the difference - so it could have gone either way. In the end it is not whether you win or lose that matters - but how you played the game.

    Sri Lanka had plenty of reasons to be over-cautious (or negative). They were outside Asia, weather was unfamiliar, toss was lost, a relatively new captain, coach stranded them at a crucial juncture, and two of the most senior players were absent. The pressure to maintain the world-champion tag can also be added to the list.

    It was heart-warming to see that it was as if none of these were in anybody's mind during the game. The fearless unperturbed approach to the game probably won the game for Sri Lanka. It is amazing what we can accomplish once we overcome our fears.

  • POSTED BY JustIPL on | May 22, 2014, 15:24 GMT

    SL are becoming the giant killers, first they beat india in world cup final under the captaincy of Malinga and then gave a beating to poms who s badly hurt them during the world cup.

  • POSTED BY JustIPL on | May 22, 2014, 15:21 GMT

    Malinga again choked the helicopters. ha ha ha.

  • POSTED BY Nerav on | May 22, 2014, 9:05 GMT

    Think England should realise that they have decent test internationals that cant play limited overs cricket or they have decent limited over cricketers who can't play international.

  • POSTED BY SDeepalV on | May 22, 2014, 7:44 GMT

    Well.. two third of big three down to Lions and bring on the 3rd - which is Aussies. Deepalv

  • POSTED BY SLCricketFan-72 on | May 21, 2014, 23:41 GMT

    @rizwan1981: You are right... But Why only BHANUKA RAJAPAKSHE ? What about Rambukwella & even Muba ? In my honest opinion, they all should be in the playing 11 to make a Real-Difference in SL cricket and lift the standard to a sky high level. Thanks to the SLC 's most valuable regeneration program, we can see a Glowing Bright Future for SL cricket, when all this is fulfilled in very near future. The only problem is, this cannot be applied to the bowlers, since they are a rare bread, that even a lookalike cannot be found within the sacred territory. Otherwise, by now, we would have seen another set of juggernauts replacing the bowlers like Malinga, Kulasekera, Lakmal etc. This could have added more Glory to the glistening futur of SL cricket..

  • POSTED BY Puffin on | May 21, 2014, 22:44 GMT

    England were too defensive and fiddled around too much. In this format you need to get on or get out, there's no time for much else. Did they think it was a test match?

  • POSTED BY neil99 on | May 21, 2014, 22:11 GMT

    The Moores regime is clueless already. Carberry in T20s; No Moeen; Tredwell - the epitome of the county journeyman; Root looking be hapless yet again; Bell wasted, when it's more important he's needed in the other formats. No Lumb.

    Oh dear, oh dear, oh dear...

  • POSTED BY yorkshire-86 on | May 21, 2014, 16:52 GMT

    Carberry is 33 if he can't catch by now he never will learn. And what is the obsession with shoehorning Bell into the limited overs formats? He is a half decent international batsmen who has earned his place in the 5 day format, but no more. Apart from that first home series with him and Cook opening, he has been a liability in ODIs, eating balls for no end product - while in T20s his inability to attack length should put him nowhere near the team. Root should open or not play - if you have watched him domestic level he is good at scoring fast in the Powerplay but tends to get bogged down later on. Lumb Root Hales Taylor Bopara Morgan Buttler Broad Jordan Tredwell Panesar.To win a T20 you need at least 2 full time spinners

  • POSTED BY cricket_slcsupport on | May 21, 2014, 14:25 GMT

    Well played SL. Especially without Sanga & Mahela. SL needs to improve their fielding. All the Best for the Test & ODI series. Win or Loose we will support you always.,

  • POSTED BY on | May 21, 2014, 14:10 GMT

    not surprised SL is a very strong ODI and T20 side. I think they will win the ODI series. They have a good bowling attack in kulu and malinga as pace, with eranga perera being very promising talents. Then u have spinners in herath. Batting is their weaker suit and I reckon mahela needs to open as he is their best opener. Don't know what he was doing playing 300 games in middle order. He has every shot in the book and numerous outside the book. He averages almost 60 as opener. But sanga in full flow will make up for it.

  • POSTED BY BigINDFan on | May 21, 2014, 14:04 GMT

    Well played SL, Eng are improving but expected to do better in home conditions.

    @Sarath Weerasekera - No one really cares about ICC rankings. Ask MSD if he cares. Just enjoy the game and SL win. That is what many Indian fans did after WC2011 win with MSD classic six! They did not care about who was No.1 in ODIs.

    T20s will be the future of cricket. This means Test cricket and ODIs have to find relevance and promoted properly by ICC.

  • POSTED BY on | May 21, 2014, 13:36 GMT

    There were lot of positives to take forward from Sri Lanka's side. Every batsman cannot succeed in every match. Yet 3 batsmen, Kithruwan, Lahiru and Thisara making good scores means overall satisfactory returns from batting perspective. Malinga could use him as he planned to because other bowlers did their job as well. Fielding was good as it is used to be in spite of one dropped catch in the slips. Thisara is developing into that fast bowling allrounder Sanath Jayasuriya identified as vital for the success in 2015 WC. With Kualasekara batting below him we have the fire power to go for all out kill in the final overs. Chandimal should make use of these opportunities he is getting. At the moment he is the wicket keeper batsman. That "batsman" part may vanish if he fails and then he will be in danger of loosing "wicket keeper" tag as well.

  • POSTED BY on | May 21, 2014, 13:23 GMT

    India is so lucky that this series has only single T20. Otherwise, their luckily received No. 1 ranking would have easily gone.

  • POSTED BY Speng on | May 21, 2014, 12:47 GMT

    Chasing a 150+ strike rate England had 3 batsmen waste 35 balls batting at way below 100... Bell and Roots selection didn't strike my eye as being appropriate especially since Bell (and I can hardly believe this) hasn't played any T20 in 3 years!?

  • POSTED BY kandykolla on | May 21, 2014, 12:34 GMT

    I was there at the Oval ..!! Forget about who won or lost !!!!! When crucial decisions favouring the English players replays were shown in giant screens in the ground several times where players and spectators can watch !! Obviously it`s fare...!! But, when decisions against English players ??( Run outs, catches, wides... etc..) all the Lankan players and the spectators were looking at the giant screen to see what exactly happened, but nothing was there !! Big disappointment for the our Lankan players in the field !! This is something similar that our coach Fabrice got nicked at a crucial time !!

  • POSTED BY VikumHerath on | May 21, 2014, 12:26 GMT

    Well done Malinga, Thisara & Thiri. You guys are awesome and pulled the weight towards another victory for SL, as always did in the past despite repeated failures at the top! According to SLC's propaganda, they are predicting a Glowingly bright, eye-blinding future & ELONGATING the Elaboration (beyond Mahela Jayawardene/Kumar Sangakkara sans future) based on a single T20 performance :)) According to their visible agenda, when one juggernaut fails, SLC supremo seem to have a list of earmarked juggernauts to "regenerate" the level of SL Cricket to the heights, beyond recognition! Anyhow, we are eternally grateful to the actual WORKHORSES in the side, who are continuously, tirelessly, pulling an enormous weight to make us Happy!

  • POSTED BY on | May 21, 2014, 11:47 GMT

    Sri Lanka did very well to post a billiant 9-run win over England. What is most conspicuous with this win is that the team did it sans Kumar Sangakkara and Mahela Jayawardene. This fact clearly depicts that no one is indispensable and determinaion and commitment is all that is needed to scale the highest wall. Kudos to Skipper Lasith Malinga for is brilliant captaincy and maintaning a 100% success rate. The new look SriLanka XI should always include two impressive all-rounders in Thisara Perera and Nuwan Kulasekara. In a T20 game each batsman has to score 20 - 30 runs and it all adds up to a big total. Well done, Sri Lanka - you proved your worth as World Champs!

  • POSTED BY cloudmess on | May 21, 2014, 11:14 GMT

    The problem with England's questionable tactics is that they now have a coach who is only able to deal in strategies which might work at county level. He has no feel for the international game. Never mind Carberry, Bell etc the dodgiest selection here has been Peter Moores as England coach.

  • POSTED BY 200ondebut on | May 21, 2014, 11:10 GMT

    Not sure what Engalnd's strategy is? As others have said, 20 overs is too short a format to have the likes of Bell and Root taking time up at 3 & 4 - especially when the par score (or what you are chasing) is around 180.

    SL are World Champs though - they deserved the victory. Hopefully the longer format of ODI's and then tests will favour England.

  • POSTED BY Englishmanabroad on | May 21, 2014, 11:02 GMT

    @John_Geo. Great performance by SL, and great innings by Perera, but I disagree with John on one thing, it was the dropped catch by Carberry that "...made the difference." It was inexcusable. If that catch had been taken, then the 22 off the 17th/18th (?) over would have been much less likely, and while England might still have lost, it would have been by probably 1 or 2 runs in the last couple of balls.

  • POSTED BY Ninj on | May 21, 2014, 11:01 GMT

    It is fascinating to see how Malinga coordinated the team together made the changes himself unlike the other matches he had the privilege of Mahela and Sangakkara on field for advise he has shown maturity as captain and wish him good luck, hope other captains can pick a leaf off Malinga and read/learn

  • POSTED BY CodandChips on | May 21, 2014, 10:59 GMT

    @JG you make a good point about Bopara being like Marmite. The truth is imo he's been the best white-ball bowler for England this year, but yesterday he was dreadful. Batting wise he finished off a couple of games recently and seems to be playing aggressive innings with clean hitting more than those abysmal innings that he can play where he doesn't score. I'm starting to think he should be stuck with, certainly ahead of Stokes.

    Re the drop, I understand what you're saying. Perhaps I should take off my Hants hat when England play. I still think Morgan is getting off lightly. He did glance over to Carberry, saw him getting ready to catch, and then tried to take the catch himself, distracting Carberry in the process. But I agree Carberry is far from blameless, and him dropping catches in an England shirt is too common. As is he struggling when batting.

  • POSTED BY VillageBlacksmith on | May 21, 2014, 10:51 GMT

    Eh??? And Morgan blames the bowlers…??? Er well what about the serial dot ballers at the top of the order leaving the lower middle order always too much to do… Carberry shd be nowhere near this team, his form with the bat and his hands is not good enough, neither shd Ian ''Dot'' Bell, a player with a dire SR even in ODIs. Morgan owes a big innings so shd keep quiet, but it is a worry that the muddled selection from last year is still there half way through this year for all to see… Except by the selectors themselves…

  • POSTED BY JG2704 on | May 21, 2014, 10:00 GMT

    @rezmata on (May 21, 2014, 9:22 GMT) Re Bopara - he seems to be Marmite on these threads where most either vastly overrate him or vastly underrate him. Problem is that in the past Ravi has been as guilty as anyone for stagnating the RR so you put him back up the order and you could well be in the same boat. I'd have put Morgan and Jos up the order and maybe gone outside the box and tries Woakes or Jordan. As it happens Morgan struggled the most with the bat

  • POSTED BY ajithabey on | May 21, 2014, 9:52 GMT

    Good win to start the tour and hopefully SL will keep the momentum.Kusal Perera and Chandimal needs to make effective contributions in future matches to justify their inclusion in the team.

  • POSTED BY on | May 21, 2014, 9:42 GMT

    Future XI for T20Is for SL should be: 1. KJ Perera 2. Dilshan Munaweera 3. Lahiru Thirimanne 4. Kithuruwan Vithanage 5. Dinesh Chandimal 6. Angelo Mathews 7. Thisara Perera 8. Nuwan Kulasekara 9. Lasith Malinga 10. Akila Dananjaya 11. Tharindu Kaushal

  • POSTED BY LALITHKURUWITA on | May 21, 2014, 9:39 GMT

    This is for those in SL, India or other countries who criticize Malinga. How many times he has done it in last few overs In World Cup, IPL or other tournaments. He has a fantastic brain in death bowling. He said in the post match interview that he wanted to bowl straight slow bowlers to Hail as he is the best batsman. In WC final he bowled wide yorkers to Dhoni. Yuvraj and Kohli. What a brain!!!!. I need Malinga to captain SL in both ODI and T20 and stay with SL team for another 5 years.

  • POSTED BY rezmata on | May 21, 2014, 9:22 GMT

    The new regime has got it all wrong. Eng is still at sea.It is known that the T20 game can change in a over its crucial you get it right. Heres where the new regime got it wrong: 1) Carberry, Bell, Root are not T20 players. They consume too many deliveries, and when they get out before getting runs more than the balls faced the team is stagnated and even more under pressure. 2) T20 you need 3 or 4 specialist bowlers. Today England went with just two and two half baked 'all-rounders' and two batsman who can roll their arm. 3) Butler is not a good wicket keeper. 4) Bopara bat too down the order. Would have played the perfect foil for Hales.

  • POSTED BY Lakpj on | May 21, 2014, 9:12 GMT

    I think both teams will be disappointing with their bowling and fielding. If England continue this trend it would be quite tough for them in the up coming ODI series.

  • POSTED BY JG2704 on | May 21, 2014, 8:59 GMT

    It was probably a more comprehensive victory than the 9 runs margin would suggest. Gurney and Jordan will be rueing Carberry/Morgan's comedy show in the field which cost the former a deserved wicket from a decent slower ball and the latter damage on his ER from the next over. I make it that Perera scored 28 off the next 8 deliveries he faced. We certainly don't have the quality of bowler in this format but re batting , I think our thinking was too rigid. If we're chasing a total around 150 then I'm happy with someone like Bell coming in at 3 but surely it's suicide when you are already chasing a big total and are behind the run rate. Too much for Buttler and Bopara to do and Morgan had a bad game too

  • POSTED BY southstoke49 on | May 21, 2014, 8:50 GMT

    Watching the IPL recently & how Punjab chased down a 200+ score is such a contrast to England. They went for it from ball 1 as did SL. Yes our death bowling was not great, although Gurney was an improvement but the bowling stats are not that different to SL and the total was probably about par.

    In my opinion the reason we lost was that our middle order could not muster a strike rate over 100. Bell (.7) Morgan (.4) and Root (.7) all killed any momentum and left too much to do at the end. Morgan has not made a decent score for ages but is made captain-while Bell has not even played in 20/20 for years-how?

    Well done SL. New England regime: same inflexible conservative tactics+ same ridiculous selections=loss.

  • POSTED BY JG2704 on | May 21, 2014, 8:49 GMT

    @Somya7 on (May 21, 2014, 6:46 GMT) Why is KP so crucial in your eyes? He's had (bar 2 or 3 inns) a very ordinary IPL in terms of both scores and SRs and where is his (as captain) Franchise sitting in the table?

    @CoadandChips - The dropped catch was both men's fault. I'd say more Carberry. I'm not sure if anyone called. If Carberry called and Morgan ignored him then I'd say Morgan was at least equally culpable. If neither called then it's a poor show but Carberry can't deflect the blame if he didn't call. Re the colours - I prefer the sky blue. Not sure if they have a different colour for ODIs?

  • POSTED BY on | May 21, 2014, 8:18 GMT

    Congrats.to Malinga and the boys. 19th was the matching winning Over. well done Srilanka.

  • POSTED BY PPMMSS on | May 21, 2014, 7:49 GMT

    Great Game , Good luck for ODI series

  • POSTED BY Diaz54 on | May 21, 2014, 7:45 GMT

    Not to mention umpire had a great debut!!

  • POSTED BY King900 on | May 21, 2014, 7:42 GMT

    MOORES will have to learn and quickly... second time around. England's bowlers were woeful with Jordan in particular ... why all the wide bowling ? All bowlers are shy to copy Malinga's style of "death bowling". Why

    Secondly, England need a powerful top-order batsman who can go "big" up front as they always leave the "chase" too late. Joe Root is NOT a T20 player but rather a Test player. England fielding too seemed very ordinary.

  • POSTED BY priceless1 on | May 21, 2014, 7:40 GMT

    its was England's game to loose and they did, first by dropping as many catches as they can and then sending the wrong batting line up ( why is Bopara batting so low down the order?) after Sanga and Mahela's retirement these so call young SL batsmen s are giving BD players a good run for money as the mindless sloggers in world cricket ( just see the way Vithanage and Chandimal got out ?) they were lucky that England fielders gave so many lives to Thirimanne and Perera otherwise the target would have been somewhere around 120's

  • POSTED BY on | May 21, 2014, 6:51 GMT

    Theme of the article seems to imply this to be a close game. Don't think that's quite accurate especially in light of a number of appalling umpiring decisions. Hope the ICC will take note, he is clearly not up to make nor meant to umpire at club / county level let alone international level.

  • POSTED BY CodandChips on | May 21, 2014, 6:48 GMT

    Why the red kit? Is blue ODIs, red T20? Or was the blue to annoy Scotland? And the new dark blue hats didn't escape my notice.

    The issue with us and T20 is we don't play enough. Most of these players will not feature for their counties in the blast for many games, if at all. How can a player's ability to play T20 be judged if they don't play it? How can players develop their T20 game? I guess it means you have to keep picking the same side in these one off T20Is and hope they do the job in WT20.

    Based on this performance and his other England games, Carberry should go. Also I don't think Bell should be in the squad. Nasser Hussain mentioned Taylor and Vince, 2 players who I have wanted in the side for a while. Perhaps having Taylor and Vince in the top 3 would reduce the pressure on the finishers.

    Putting too much pressure on the finishers isn't exclusive to T20Is. It's an issue in ODIs as well, and is the reason I'm not a massive fan of Cook and Bell opening.

  • POSTED BY Rick777 on | May 21, 2014, 6:46 GMT

    If umpiring was up to standard, the SL win would been by a much higher margin.

  • POSTED BY Somya7 on | May 21, 2014, 6:46 GMT

    Disappointed as an English fan. Where has owais shah disappeared ? KP has to recalled. He is valuable !

    following should be the squads for upcoming t-20s, odis and test matches -

    T-20-

    HALES, BOPARA, KP(C), OWAIS SHAH, MORGON, BUTTLER(WK), ROOT, JORDON , BROAD , TREDWELL , FINN.

    EXTRAS - LUMB, TREGO, G.BATTY, GURNRY.

    ODI-

    COOK, BELL, ROOT, KP, MORGON, BUTTLER(WK), BOPARA, BROAD, TREDWELL, FINN, ANDERSOON (C) .

    EXTRAS - OWAIS SHAH, STOKES, G.BATTY, JORDAN

    TESTS-

    COOK, CARBERRY, ROOT, KP, BELL, STOKES, KIESWETTER(WK), BROAD, ANDERSON(C), ONIONS, PANESAR.

    EXTRAS - COMPTON, TREDWELL, FINN, JAMES TAYLOR

  • POSTED BY imtiazjaleel on | May 21, 2014, 6:42 GMT

    Teams often tend to forgot while chasing that they have to face Malinga's 4 overs where it is very difficult to score. The calculation should be based on the remaining 16 overs and try to bat accordingly.

  • POSTED BY android_user on | May 21, 2014, 6:19 GMT

    want to defend a difficult score... then call Sri LankaNS....

  • POSTED BY YsaKaru on | May 21, 2014, 6:16 GMT

    Congrats!!!!!!! Excellent Work!!!!!! GOOD LUCK FOR ODI SERIES.........

  • POSTED BY CodandChips on | May 21, 2014, 6:03 GMT

    Sri Lanka played well, even if they did look like they missed the 2 recent retirees. It was an excellent T20 match.

    The issue of playing just the odd T20 here and there is you can't decide who is suitable or not on a small samplesize

    Gurney bowled well. His last 2 overs went for 20, but he bowled well. Jordan was a mixed bag but showed enough to convince me he should play. Bopara was surprisingly poor. Tredwell again seemed unable to respond to a batting onslaught. Woakes bowled with good pace and bowled 2 good 2 poor overs but still hasn't convinced me yet in this format.

    Carberry again looked uncomfortable batting. He took a good catch. His drop was Morgan's fault in my opinion (perhaps Hants bias here- right @JG2704?). Morgan looks at Carberry, sees Carberry, then still tried to take the catch? He distracted Carberry, who watches Morgan rather than the ball, and catch dropped.

    Bell struggled though hadn't played a T20 in years. Bopara, Hales, Buttler batted well. Morgan was poor

  • POSTED BY on | May 21, 2014, 6:02 GMT

    Something abt Malinga.... many commentators said Malinga was just the captain at toss, indirectly indicating duo did the job for SL in Bangaladesh. Yeah in the world cup it was a brilliant collective effort by all. Now even having taken the duo factor out of the equation (Also with many other factors that could have negatively affected SL dressing room), still Malinga did an amazing job as a captain; Unorthodox field setting, giving the final over to Lakmal where Anji had bowled 2 over for less than 10, holding him self back to bowl in the middle and death overs. Good evidence that he has captaincy materials in himself even though he is not as eloquent as Sanga or Mahela in front of media. Shouldn't be overwhelmed to arrive at a conclusion. But still.... his sheer fearlessness might be leaking into the hearts of the grooming generation. Simply he might not be a 'great' captain of Mahela/ Dhoni/ Ponting mould. but he would make 'sleeping' lions awake and back them in the arena.

  • POSTED BY on | May 21, 2014, 5:59 GMT

    Umpiring is pathetic, I wonder why nobody talks about it

  • POSTED BY Prabhash1985 on | May 21, 2014, 5:43 GMT

    I couldn't watch the match. It starts too late at night here :( Congratulations Sri Lanka...

  • POSTED BY Baundele on | May 21, 2014, 5:35 GMT

    Ravi Bopara should bat at #3. He is the man with form at the moment. After such poor umpiring, justice has been done.

  • POSTED BY on | May 21, 2014, 5:22 GMT

    The umpiring in this game was horrendous, and could have changed the course of the game. Dont understand why this is not reflected in the article to be honest

  • POSTED BY Herath-UK on | May 21, 2014, 5:16 GMT

    A great win by the world champions, Farbrace is in or out who cares approach. A lot of concerns without the presence of the famous duo was answered in no uncertain fashion beating the only team who beat them in that competition in their own den.

  • POSTED BY SriLankanYoungBlood on | May 21, 2014, 5:12 GMT

    Great win by Sri Lanka. Superb batting by Thisara and Kithu get maximum advantage of given chance. Equally sensible batting by Thri.he played Sanga role in this match. Finally Good Captaincy and as usual Superb death bowling by Malinga. Only negative thing is Dilshan and Kusal beg their chances.

  • POSTED BY on | May 21, 2014, 5:06 GMT

    If only England had had a Third Man. However, I don't know where he would have come from or what that would have cost. 'If only' is one of the things that make the game great.

  • POSTED BY on | May 21, 2014, 4:56 GMT

    Congratulations to srilankan team.Vithanage and lahiru played good innings.the opening stand has not given up to the expectation.However without Sanga and Mahela sri lanka has performed well.dilshan should have played key role as an senior player.Kusal also must select his shot and must not attempt to hit every ball.Great innings from thisera perera as well good bowling by Malinga made srilanka safe,

  • POSTED BY jmcilhinney on | May 21, 2014, 4:47 GMT

    Looking at the match notes, England made it to 50 a ball ahead of SL and to both 100 and 150 two balls ahead and the number of wickets lost was similar too. With both teams reaching 150 in the 18th over, you could certainly say that it was Malinga's death bowling that made the difference, which is so often the case in SL wins. He's easily the best in the business.

    How many times has Carberry dropped important catches for England now? If I recall correctly, he dropped three in his ODI debut, put Haddin down in Adelaide in the second Ashes Test and now dropped an important one here.

  • POSTED BY Sidath346 on | May 21, 2014, 4:33 GMT

    This is a good win for SL. Played outside Asia, new skipper, no Sanga/Mahela experience and new coach altogether would have adder pressure but they played fearlessly which was heartening to see. SL would need to do something about Hales though, come up with strategies to tie him down and get him out early. Umpiring was a joke, it was atrocious. Quite a few decisions given against SL including wides that were not. Hales too was clean out earlier but not given. DRS is much needed to prevent these inexperienced umpires from making blunders like this.

  • POSTED BY anver777 on | May 21, 2014, 4:10 GMT

    What a thundering knock by Thisara !!!! he didn't get a single match for KXI in the on going IPL, yet he proved how devastating he is in T20 format !!!! a close result, still a fantastic win for SL Lions in Eng conditions !!!!!

  • POSTED BY on | May 21, 2014, 4:01 GMT

    Now guys, what happened to all the secrets that Paul Farbace had up his sleeve on Lankan SWOT analysis. May be he is keeping them for later usage, and let us wait and see.

  • POSTED BY android_user on | May 21, 2014, 3:49 GMT

    Malinga is a great bowler and he prove it so many times for Srilanka and also contribution from Thisara Parera in batting is also appreciable because they need some aggressive players in the end who play some big shots when your top order fail. Now Srilankans can't rely most on their middle order cos two great players my favourite Sanga and Jayawardne are not there. anyways good cricket from Srilanka. Congratulations for the victory guys.

  • POSTED BY on | May 21, 2014, 3:44 GMT

    New regime....same old story for England. Sri Lanka attacked while England plodded. Weather permitting the ODI is only going one way until England grasp the

    the nettle and dominate the opposition.

  • POSTED BY ksquared on | May 21, 2014, 3:35 GMT

    Good win overall by SL but have to say the umpiring was appalling. I still don't understand why they don't use DRS is some form in T20 I guess the time factor is a reason but they say T20 is the testing ground for new innovations in cricket so why haven't the ICC come up with some way to incorporate DRS in T20 instead of flashing LED bails? Bring on the ODIs SL should be strong favorites with Mahela & Sanga back.

  • POSTED BY android_user on | May 21, 2014, 3:27 GMT

    Well done Sri Lanka. We really deserved this win. In fact as the revenge for what England did in Chittagong for us in the world cup. No matter what position we are in the rankings, we are still no. 1. It seems that we have a great future ahead in absence of the two great legends Kumar and Mahela. Anyways Well done lions... Hope you will win the ODI series also... Congrats...

  • POSTED BY Greatest_Game on | May 21, 2014, 3:26 GMT

    Well, at least England had their win against Scotland - even though it was only a D/L triumph. But its back to business as usual now I guess? At least losing to SL is not quite the same as losing to an associate. (Good thing they don't have to face Netherlands soon.)

  • POSTED BY android_user on | May 21, 2014, 3:22 GMT

    Malinga and Thisara were ironically and sadly the only SL international players to be picked in auction .The disadvantage for SL players was that they were not available for the whole season .I am sure a lot of SL players will get picked next auction especially in teams like delhi who need good bowlers. In a way it is good that Mahela and sanga are no longer playing in T20 as new batsmen of SL will get a chance .SL have a lot of talented young batsmen . Its good to see youngsters like vithanage and thirimanne perform well . An Indian fan

  • POSTED BY on | May 21, 2014, 3:22 GMT

    It seems the Sri lankan team can still win without Mahela and Kumar! Very happy for them!!! Go Sri lanka, you make us proud to be Lankan!

  • POSTED BY Reggaecricket on | May 21, 2014, 3:18 GMT

    Yes, they won in the end, but Lakmal and Kulesekere bowled 4 overs each and went for 44 and 39, where as Mathews bowled only 2 overs despite going only for 7! These things are not discussed when the result is a win, but with such a narrow margin, it could have misfired on them, too!

  • POSTED BY on | May 21, 2014, 2:54 GMT

    Malinga is the best limited over fast bowler in the world! stayena nd johnson far behind him! seems marvan has work with thisara batting! he playing some shots through off side

  • POSTED BY on | May 21, 2014, 2:52 GMT

    well done guys! really happy about our spirit! young guns played very well! with kusal out of form and no kiththa in ODI squad our ODI team should be thiri, dilshan, sanga, chandi, mahela, mathews, thisara, kula, sena, lakmal, malinga i hope they will give chance to chandimal to bat higher in the order! we need to prepare he and thiri!

  • POSTED BY on | May 21, 2014, 2:49 GMT

    SL is just too strong for England

  • POSTED BY Htc-Android on | May 21, 2014, 2:29 GMT

    Once again SL proved, why they are world champions. Even with a young team they were able to beat England. Kusal needs to start performing in green wickets, otherwise he will lose his place to Kithruwan.

  • POSTED BY SL.Charith on | May 21, 2014, 2:27 GMT

    Well paid Sri Lanka, It's really nice game, wonderful cricket, We love the opportunity we have now to play with England, It's really nice start to the tour. I'll wish all of them to be successful in ODI as well. One of the fact that there was lots of umpiring errors.. seriously then need more techniques to follow.. even though we won, it was really poor umpiring we all should accepted. a game of cricket is ruined by kind of things. yes! you can call it as a human error but it's not nice for the game not for one team for both team!

  • POSTED BY on | May 21, 2014, 1:57 GMT

    good win in the end..but is it wise to bowl lakmal in the last over of close matches..he does not seem to have a head for depth bowling....lack of good seemers is over main weak point in this tour..

  • POSTED BY Sinhaya on | May 21, 2014, 1:31 GMT

    High time that Vithanage opens with Dilshan for the ODIs. Cant be too harsh on our bowling last night as it was a good batting deck. Lakmal is far better than last night. Thisara was brilliant. Hope we get off to a winning start tomorrow.

  • POSTED BY Jeewaka9999 on | May 21, 2014, 1:13 GMT

    Congratulation Sri Lanka. U played well. Matthews could hv been given another at least 1 over because he bowled beauty. Some poor decisions by Umpire Gould

  • POSTED BY Sgtm1993 on | May 21, 2014, 1:06 GMT

    Also I never understand why England persist with Tradewell. I mean he's got no variation what so ever and he'll be smacked all over the park outside england and even in england against a quality batsman. Had england changed the batting line up and sent morgan or butler at 3 or 4 then malinga would have come and bowled couple of overs early in the innings and they could have got an odd boundary or two? I mean surely, they aren't thinking of hitting sixes or fours to malinga in the end of the innings with all the fielders in boundary, are they? Pathetic tactic. I don't approve of Cadbury and he justified with his performance-too defensive. Hales was good, and they should have sent morgan at 3 followed by bell who could have nudged singles or 2 after the powerplay. England have 3 of their best big hitters at 5,6,7 and they hope to pull off a miracle :) like trying to get 120 of 30 balls? lol ain't gonna happen with malinga

  • POSTED BY Sgtm1993 on | May 21, 2014, 0:59 GMT

    Might be a new era for England with a new coach and few new blokes but its the same old negative tactics that we get to see. Although they got quite close to the target, they were never in control in that run chase. Alex Hales looks like a bright prospect but the other englishmen just fell apart. Malinga-brilliant as usual. Superb death bowling. You have got 20 overs to play and 180 odd to chase and you send in cadbury(who has already melted in Australia and i don't understand why he is in the team?),bell and root( most over hyped player who got found out in Australia). Why England Why? Batting line up should be like this: Hales and Carberry to open(if they play him) followed by morgan, bell(steady the innings), bopara(although i don't approve of him though he got few runs today), root, and butler(if they need a late burst).Perera blew england away with his late blitz, and english bowling..well it might work in england, but on other parts of the world, they'll be going for plenty.

  • POSTED BY on | May 21, 2014, 0:29 GMT

    SL fielding was very bad. Too many boundaries gifted through misfields and Thirimanne dropped a dolly, like he did in the practice match against Sussex. Thanks to Malinga's brilliance, both times, the batsman was out one ball (Sussex) or two balls (England) later.

    Umpiring was abysmal. It's still the first match but so many unfair calls and decisions already. It was preposterous that Malinga's LBW wasn't given, and about two wides (as I remember) off Kulasekara's bowling were unfairly called when they were inside. Malinga's face said it all when he questioned the umpire on the denied LBW. :D

    Umpires did their best to make the match a close one yet the Lions emerged triumphant.

  • POSTED BY criclanka on | May 21, 2014, 0:18 GMT

    Though they have been lucky whith some edgs flying to boundries it was a great performances by the new looked SL team.Good luck for the ODI series.

  • POSTED BY on | May 20, 2014, 23:15 GMT

    Congrats, nice start after Sanga and Mahela era

  • POSTED BY ground-boy on | May 20, 2014, 22:46 GMT

    Thisara's presence a visa for victory. New team reload made champs lords of T20.

  • POSTED BY Herath-UK on | May 20, 2014, 22:00 GMT

    Sad to see the two umpires lowering the standard of umpiring in England. ECB should see to that is maintained at the highest level.

  • POSTED BY Yasi_Gee on | May 20, 2014, 21:52 GMT

    Well done Sri Lanka. True world T20 champions... Very good team effort.

  • POSTED BY goldeneye075 on | May 20, 2014, 21:21 GMT

    It was a good win!!! Malinga was brilliant with the ball. But clearly it should not have to come this close, should have won it more easily than this! Bowling changers were pathetic!!! Always malinga was at the wrong place in the field , need to find a fielding position where he would be less critical. One of these things need to be figured out, either Malinga need to removed from captain or he need to improve in with his bowling changers. As this is the first with out Mahela or Sanga, I would forgive him, and will give few more chances. If it does not work out reality needs to kick in.

  • POSTED BY Warm_Coffee on | May 20, 2014, 21:08 GMT

    Ian Bell the culprit here. His strike rate was way below 100 like an ODI game otherwise England wouldn't have lost by that small margin and therefore won. He is not T20 player.

  • POSTED BY SixSmasher on | May 20, 2014, 21:05 GMT

    Bell's pedestrian knock cost England. Bopara also batting too low.

  • POSTED BY on | May 20, 2014, 21:00 GMT

    Well done Sri Lanka, keep it up. Next time don't bring it so close, my heart beat is too fast nowadays when you bring the game to a close finish. Whatever I like it or not it's so interesting . Follow up this win towards ODI & Test wins with the help of big brothers, Sange & Mahela. Good Luck boys.

  • POSTED BY LankaPuthra on | May 20, 2014, 20:46 GMT

    Again SL top order fails, particularly Kusal Perera. How much longer do SL selectors want to keep his position secure? How much do they trust him to deliver? Interesting to see Kusal's performance at the ODIs - if he has kept his place, that is. Congratulations SL nonetheless! Sweet revenge for the WT20 defeat at the hands of the same team a few weeks back.

  • POSTED BY android_user on | May 20, 2014, 20:42 GMT

    Malingas last over sealed the deal.

  • POSTED BY shakeena on | May 20, 2014, 20:39 GMT

    "If it isn't a last over finish it is not a T20" that's the quote for Sri Lankan players.. :) well played guys and Maali it's great to trust Lakmal and give the last , presser over to him.. that will do him a world of good. Some people will say Kusal and Dill failed but it is a T20 and they didn't waste balls trying to settle in even though they didn't make big scores. All and all It's a perfect game of T20 cricket from both of teams full of entertain and action. That's what we all need and 22 of them delivered it :) May great one bless the lions !!!

  • POSTED BY KingOwl on | May 20, 2014, 20:29 GMT

    I did not think we would miss Sanga and Mahela and we did not. One could say it is hindsight. But, I always knew.

  • POSTED BY VillageBlacksmith on | May 20, 2014, 19:36 GMT

    what on earth is Ian 'dot' Ball doing anywhere near a T20 side?? His strike rate even in ODIs is woeful…. Time to move on Moores and cut the dead wood… I really hoped we'd seen the last of stultifyingly dull players like him in the short forms…

  • POSTED BY R_U_4_REAL_NICK on | May 20, 2014, 19:31 GMT

    Well, start off as you mean to finish eh England... This is looking for all money to be yet another embarrassing defeat. I'm not going to make excuses about the adventurous team choice; just poor performance by England, and good all-round display from Sri Lanka. Might not even need a full four overs from Malinga at this rate...

  • POSTED BY CodandChips on | May 20, 2014, 18:42 GMT

    Not great currently. Hopefully Carberry can put my doubts about him away.

    I thought Woakes would be the 2014 drinks carrier. He had 2 good and 2 poor overs and had pace. He certainly looked better than Bresnan or Dernbach.

    Bopara was woeful which was a surprise. Gurney did well. Jordan a mixed bag but is young so should be persevered with.

    Bell getting a game has also surprised me. Hopefully he can prove me wrong as well.

  • POSTED BY on | May 20, 2014, 17:50 GMT

    we miss u so much sanga and mahela........

  • POSTED BY on | May 20, 2014, 17:50 GMT

    we miss u so much sanga and mahela........

  • POSTED BY CodandChips on | May 20, 2014, 18:42 GMT

    Not great currently. Hopefully Carberry can put my doubts about him away.

    I thought Woakes would be the 2014 drinks carrier. He had 2 good and 2 poor overs and had pace. He certainly looked better than Bresnan or Dernbach.

    Bopara was woeful which was a surprise. Gurney did well. Jordan a mixed bag but is young so should be persevered with.

    Bell getting a game has also surprised me. Hopefully he can prove me wrong as well.

  • POSTED BY R_U_4_REAL_NICK on | May 20, 2014, 19:31 GMT

    Well, start off as you mean to finish eh England... This is looking for all money to be yet another embarrassing defeat. I'm not going to make excuses about the adventurous team choice; just poor performance by England, and good all-round display from Sri Lanka. Might not even need a full four overs from Malinga at this rate...

  • POSTED BY VillageBlacksmith on | May 20, 2014, 19:36 GMT

    what on earth is Ian 'dot' Ball doing anywhere near a T20 side?? His strike rate even in ODIs is woeful…. Time to move on Moores and cut the dead wood… I really hoped we'd seen the last of stultifyingly dull players like him in the short forms…

  • POSTED BY KingOwl on | May 20, 2014, 20:29 GMT

    I did not think we would miss Sanga and Mahela and we did not. One could say it is hindsight. But, I always knew.

  • POSTED BY shakeena on | May 20, 2014, 20:39 GMT

    "If it isn't a last over finish it is not a T20" that's the quote for Sri Lankan players.. :) well played guys and Maali it's great to trust Lakmal and give the last , presser over to him.. that will do him a world of good. Some people will say Kusal and Dill failed but it is a T20 and they didn't waste balls trying to settle in even though they didn't make big scores. All and all It's a perfect game of T20 cricket from both of teams full of entertain and action. That's what we all need and 22 of them delivered it :) May great one bless the lions !!!

  • POSTED BY android_user on | May 20, 2014, 20:42 GMT

    Malingas last over sealed the deal.

  • POSTED BY LankaPuthra on | May 20, 2014, 20:46 GMT

    Again SL top order fails, particularly Kusal Perera. How much longer do SL selectors want to keep his position secure? How much do they trust him to deliver? Interesting to see Kusal's performance at the ODIs - if he has kept his place, that is. Congratulations SL nonetheless! Sweet revenge for the WT20 defeat at the hands of the same team a few weeks back.

  • POSTED BY on | May 20, 2014, 21:00 GMT

    Well done Sri Lanka, keep it up. Next time don't bring it so close, my heart beat is too fast nowadays when you bring the game to a close finish. Whatever I like it or not it's so interesting . Follow up this win towards ODI & Test wins with the help of big brothers, Sange & Mahela. Good Luck boys.

  • POSTED BY SixSmasher on | May 20, 2014, 21:05 GMT

    Bell's pedestrian knock cost England. Bopara also batting too low.