Sri Lanka v New Zealand, only Twenty20, Pallekele

Rain has final say on stop-start day

The Report by Siddhartha Talya

October 30, 2012

Comments: 42 | Text size: A | A

Sri Lanka 6 for 0 v New Zealand 74 for 7 (Southee 21*, Dananjaya 2-9, Kulasekara 2-13) Match abandoned
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

The groundstaff bring the covers on, Sri Lanka v New Zealand, Twenty20 international, Pallekele, October 30, 2012
Rain had the final say in the one-off Twenty20 in Pallekele © AFP
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New Zealand's reception on their tour of Sri Lanka was cold and rainy, as the hosts' seamers left their batting in disarray on a stop-start evening marred by heavy showers that ultimately sealed the game's fate. These showers also saved the visitors from defeat; just two overs after Sri Lanka had kept New Zealand to 74 in an already truncated fixture, the rain again caused an interruption that proved terminal.

In his first match as Sri Lanka's full-time T20 captain, Angelo Mathews hoped for some assistance for his bowlers in wet conditions and he wasn't disappointed. The discipline with which his bowlers bowled in the first half of the innings set up the game for Sri Lanka.

Mathews paved the way with a maiden first up, moving the ball both ways, getting some early swing and beating Rob Nicol's early attempts to clear the in-field. Kulasekara followed suit, the only aberration early on being a smashed four through cover by opener Tom Latham. The batsman perished next ball, swinging, and missing, a straight delivery and despite wickets in hand, the innings stagnated. Only 16 runs came in the Powerplay, the lowest for New Zealand in a T20 international.

The Sri Lanka seamers maintained tight lines, bowled mostly just short of a good length, beat the bat and cramped the batsmen as they tried to make space and push on. Brendon McCullum, still not set, charged out in a failed attempt to slog Kulasekara and skied an easy catch. Even as Mathews kept one end quiet, he brought on Shaminda Eranga who trapped Nicol in front with an inswinger in his first over. Another bowling change, Thisara Perera, was a touch fortunate to have James Franklin caught down the leg side to make it 18 for 4. A 38-ball boundary drought was broken by BJ Watling but Ross Taylor's nick to the keeper in the ninth over while trying to cut Perera left the visitors in a deep hole.

A 70-minute rain interruption gave them brief respite, and a reduction in overs - to 14 a side - spurred the lower order to chase quick runs. Andrew Ellis pulled Perera for a flat six over deep midwicket before Southee tore into Eranga to lend a bit of a respectability to New Zealand's score in a truncated game. Bowling the penultimate over, Eranga doled out length and Southee used power, and some cheekiness when he shuffled across to glance one fine, to take the bowler for 16 runs. Kulasekara, though, conceded just three off the final over to ensure his team walked back on a high, with not much for their batsmen to scale down. But the rain was to deny them.

Siddhartha Talya is a senior sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

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Posted by SLsupport on (October 31, 2012, 17:37 GMT)

@Harmony111: Do you have something against mathews or Is it just pure jealousy?

Posted by miles100 on (October 31, 2012, 14:44 GMT)

SL cricket overall has some minor issues to look at. If they fix those little ones, no team will ever beat SL in cricket. One talent was Aravinda De Silva. I'm not afraid to say that he is 100 times more talented than Tendulkar or Lara.Some may think I'm crazy. I say this because Tendulkar and Lara used to train 4 to 5 Hours in the nets everyday since they were young. Aravinda doesn't even train 1 hour in the nets since he was young and never played for his personal glory or batting average like Tendulakar or Lara. Aravinda had many hobbies like cars.When I was young, I used to see SL 13 year olds hitting sixes out of the grounds at Asgiriya International stadium. I have never seen a single Aussie or Indian 13 year old school boy hitting with such power and technique in an international cricket grounds. However SL players should overcome many physiologically barriers and play with a lot of pride at the international level. No team will ever beat them.

Posted by ifrakurshid on (October 31, 2012, 11:38 GMT)

Black Caps LUCKY to avoid defeat as srilanka exertarted their weight on a rainy day to bag a certain victory even the match was reduced to 14 overs each side PUZZLED PUNTERS IN MINORITY to anguish on the result declared by the authorities left them short of quarriling with bookies who blindly place their bets on v to srilanka. strong bookies enjoyed and smile as both side un-pridictable for punters to make money.

Posted by colombo_SL on (October 31, 2012, 8:57 GMT)

My early prediction, NZ make it into finals in the 2013 Champions trophy. They have got that talent. Good combination of hard hitters & clever fast bowlers. Sir. Richard Hadly was the first person who predicted that Sri Lanka will won 1996 WC. That time rest of the world look at him as a joker.

Posted by colombo_SL on (October 31, 2012, 8:40 GMT)

@Bishop: I couldn't get exact meaning out of your comment due to my lack of English knowledge. I'm afraid.

Posted by colombo_SL on (October 31, 2012, 8:34 GMT)

@Pappu_bhai; T20 rankings has a sense. But it is highly volatile due to less matches. you have read it as non sense.

Posted by himohan007 on (October 31, 2012, 7:10 GMT)

May I know where is Sinhaya. I couldn't find him here complaining about SLC pathetic scheduling but posted at every abandoned match in CLT20. May be a CLT20 fan from SL lol

Posted by   on (October 31, 2012, 7:07 GMT)

May I know where is Sinhaya now. Couldn't find here complaining but posted after every abandoned match in CLT20. May be a CLT20

Posted by Bishop on (October 31, 2012, 6:37 GMT)

@Colombo_SL I believe Harmony111 was being sarcastic. It is an extremely common form of humour in Aus and NZ, but it is prone to misinterpretation - especially in this sort of format where one can't see the tongue firmly implanted in the cheek!

Posted by Pappu_bhai on (October 31, 2012, 6:34 GMT)

SL was lucky here.I dont know how every matches they are lucky enough to stay alive in these type of matches.Here as Andrew pointed out they were suppose to loose.Very Pity that NZ was not able to win here.Aside to Colombo SL:20-20 Ranking is non sense.Else SL wont become No-1.Even after becoming No-1 People dont believe SL as one of the good teams means then there is some problem with rankings.Ur Belief that SL is not bad team is wrong.Earlier they cant win outside SL and now they cant even Win in SL.People are not trying to show that SL is a bad team.They are just showing the facts with proofs.I know you know the truth but you are not ready to accept the truth.

Posted by Udendra on (October 31, 2012, 5:42 GMT)

@Andrew Douch: ha, seems you have some great math skills. ICC should adopt your way of calculating instead of Dw/Lewis! :D

Posted by 9ST9 on (October 31, 2012, 4:13 GMT)

@Harmony111 - agreed Sri Lanka were 6 for 0 after 2 - terrible start when you are chasing a mammoth 74 runs.your cricketing intellect amazes us all.

Posted by denwarlo70 on (October 31, 2012, 4:05 GMT)

This was just a bad day on the field for the black caps my dear friends. I am a Sri Lankan, obviously not a NZ fan but we all know it was a bad day for NZ, come on, don't degrade world class players such as Brendon McCullum, Ross Taylor and Co., on the day, even our boys could have been like this and history has enough to prove so. However, the timing of this series is a bit questionable and I wonder if any form of cricket could be played in the coming weeks?

Posted by anver777 on (October 31, 2012, 3:53 GMT)

As expected the rain was the ultimate winner !!!! what a time to have cricket in this part of the world, this rain will continue & disturb the coming matches too.....

Posted by colombo_SL on (October 31, 2012, 3:51 GMT)

Sri Lanka is still no.1 in T20 rankings. I think our team is not so bad (I don't know why most people try to show us as a bad team still) . Only problem is we couldn't win the final. Mahela retired, when we are in the No.1 spot.

Posted by colombo_SL on (October 31, 2012, 3:46 GMT)

@Harmony111: What a nice dream to have. Enjoy it! Because you have nothing yourself to enjoy these days. You gives us smile free of charge bro!

Posted by solankibhavesh on (October 31, 2012, 2:15 GMT)

Both team are good in all formate but we have no control on nature so its depend on Board why should they arrenge the cricket in the monsoon season in srilanka, likewise the T20 worldcups matches were also washed out due to rain so Board should know which place is better in which season. and About match its littelbit but i am sure if full match were played definately NZ won the match becose pitch was bolwer friendly.

Posted by   on (October 31, 2012, 1:27 GMT)

that was a collapse and a half, good thing the rain stopped

Posted by   on (October 31, 2012, 1:26 GMT)

Strange, why so many are asking what is the point of playing this series. Long before we became the miracle of Asia, we were in the habit of asking teams to tour our emerald island during the monsoon. We used to do it to say we played a certain number of series and didn't lose. What is now sad is that our present team has the potential to be the best in the world. Reduced to a joke by "administrators". Help! I may get disappeared for saying that!!

Posted by   on (October 31, 2012, 0:26 GMT)

this match was not taken seriously because there was no point to it. The T20 world cup just ended. What was the point of this one of T20? All it did was waste peoples time. The players should have been preparing for the test and ODI series. It wasn't a qualifier for the next world T20 which is only two years away, so there was no point having it - it doesn't count towards anything?

Posted by pt_pt on (October 31, 2012, 0:08 GMT)

It was a very good toss to win, pretty sure if Sri lanka were batting first they would of been in a same position as NZ, as it was very good bowling conditions. NZ will come up much better in the one day matches.

Posted by   on (October 31, 2012, 0:01 GMT)

Why you guys critizising the teams too much, do something else , NZ is a good side on limited over format, today it is not a batting friendly pitch, how many runs SL after 2 overs???

Posted by   on (October 31, 2012, 0:00 GMT)

I agree with Harmony, NZ were clearly in a winning position. I've done the maths, at 2 overs for 6 runs SL were looking to limp to 42. NZ clearly robbed of a dominant position after some very strong work with the bat.

Posted by Vikum72 on (October 30, 2012, 23:43 GMT)

As a SL fan I feel NZ score was a respectable one given the conditions. They could have given SL some trouble especially had play continued with further interruptions. All who are blaming SLC for organizing tournaments in the monsoon should know that SLC alone does not hold the power to decide when they could schedule the home tournaments. The visiting sides also should be able to comply to the selected time frames. With all the T20 PLs around this is becoming increasingly difficult. I heard SL is playing only 2 (home and away) tests in the entire 2013 as a result of this scenario!

Posted by Dr.Vindaloo on (October 30, 2012, 23:22 GMT)

Can someone tell me what the point of this series is? Yet another T20 match in the rain in Sri Lanka. Is anyone watching?

Posted by Htc-Android on (October 30, 2012, 22:40 GMT)

@Harmony111 you are daydreaming too much mate. we were in a winning position today. its unfortunate rain spoiled everything. good luck to indian team against the england series. even if england draws the series, that will be a shame for you guys, because england whittewashed you guys in all formats of cricket.

Posted by Htc-Android on (October 30, 2012, 22:33 GMT)

@MAK123 i dont know which country fan you from. but new zealand is a good side. they are just rebuilding after the loss of bond,vettori,fleming, astle and cairns. i know they were pathetic in the last two years but WI also went through similar type of situation and now they are making a come back. so i think NZ can also do the same in the future. goodluck to new zealand in the future from a sri lankan fan. we are always with you.

Posted by HawK89 on (October 30, 2012, 22:24 GMT)

Even with NZL at their lowest, they would still thrash Ireland, who are contending to become a test playing nation. That is the difference in margin for non-test nation teams. NZL need to find proper opening batsmen and play their best middle order and bowling attack, even if it means a 4 pace attack. No time to try new players and new roles. You do that when you are a consistent winning side.

Posted by   on (October 30, 2012, 22:10 GMT)

Once again the Black Caps prove to be brittle, they are a disgrace to New Zealand and should have their funding cut. It beggars belief that these so-called "professional cricketers" get paid 160 thousand a year to produce limp displays like that.

Posted by WIDIG on (October 30, 2012, 21:49 GMT)

John Wright has never looked better, the batting display this morning was woeful...regardless of the conditions they looked poor.........could be a long series, perhaps we should have picked a coach with some idea.

Posted by Rajesh_india_1990 on (October 30, 2012, 21:28 GMT)

Worst country to play Cricket!!

Posted by   on (October 30, 2012, 20:52 GMT)

@Harmony111 are you sure you were watching the same match as the rest of us? I think you must have been watching the highlights of some 50 over match played before 1990 :)

Posted by MAK123 on (October 30, 2012, 20:38 GMT)

@IndianPunjabi: Why are NZ even counted amongst international sides. The way they batted (or did not bat at all) today, it seemed UVA Next would have been enough to beat them convincingly. Look at McCullum, Rob Nicol and their captain Ross Taylor; they don't even qualify for a club level team let alone a national side. NZ should be stripped of international Cricket and may be Ireland should be given that status. Its a disgrace watching these guys consume valuable broadcast space

Posted by   on (October 30, 2012, 20:01 GMT)

Worst black cap batting performance I've ever seen, thank god for the rain!

Posted by Harmony111 on (October 30, 2012, 18:29 GMT)

Sri Lanka lucky to get away else they would have folded for no more than 30 runs. I was keen to see the new captain being clean bowled for a golden duck but alas the rain did not let that happen. Anyways NZ must be feeling a bit disappointed after a match they should have won was abandoned due to the perennial Sri Lankan rain.

Posted by vivek_khyati on (October 30, 2012, 18:14 GMT)

i wonder why we see such insensible decisions.. if there is rain and the match has to be reduced, why didnt they reduce it to a 7-8 over game rather than having 14 over for one side and 2 for other.. ie, 16 overs were possible and still no result..

Posted by   on (October 30, 2012, 17:47 GMT)

Better to postpone the ODI series...Otherwise It will be a waste of time and money...There is no entertainment either....

Posted by   on (October 30, 2012, 17:43 GMT)

Its monsoon time n this will be the pattern throughout the series

Posted by Indianpunjabi on (October 30, 2012, 17:24 GMT)

Why Do they Even Play there if theres Rain in this Time ? Such Poor Management..,.Same Thing they did in SLPL as well...No Shame at all...SLC should be Banned for this Poor Management for 6 Months...Shameful Act

Posted by   on (October 30, 2012, 17:23 GMT)

A very poor display of batting by New Zealand. I was expecting a lot more from them. Sri Lankans will believe that its the right time to give chance to their youngsters.

Posted by ovzdatta151 on (October 30, 2012, 17:06 GMT)

In which channel they are showing the match?

Posted by   on (October 30, 2012, 16:48 GMT)

hehe New Zealand Cricket is sliding now and they though they seriously had a chance of defeating Sri Lanka in any series good luck black caps!

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