New Zealand tour of Sri Lanka, 3rd ODI: Sri Lanka v New Zealand at Pallekele, Nov 6, 2012
Sri Lanka won by 7 wickets (with 11 balls remaining) (D/L method)
6 November 2012 - day/night match (50-over match)

Here's Malinga, and Nicol will face

Bright sunshine at the moment. Wonder how long it will last. The pitch looks similar to the one for the second ODI - dry with lots of small cracks. Expected to be slowish

While we wait for the game to start, have a look at the preview.

2 pm Sri Lanka have won the toss and have decided to field

Sri Lanka are unchanged, which means Akila Dananjaya will have to wait for his ODI debut

There are two changes to the New Zealand XI. Andrew Ellis is out with his stomach bug, and Ronnie Hira... er, apologies for jumping the gun on that, it is Jacob Oram who comes in. Brendon McCullum is also back, having recovered enough from his back problem to play today. Tom Latham misses out as a result

Mahela Jayawardene: "The weather is around. We need to make sure we have our heads up on the Duckworth-Lewis. It is tough to predict when the weather is going to come around." Says that Lasith Malinga offers him a lot as captain.

Ross Taylor: "It is going to rain today, we know that. We'll try to utilise the new rules which are in the batsmen's favour. On these dry surfaces, it is a little bit easier [for spinners, under the new rules]." On flatter pitches, he thinks it will be harder for them. They still have a role in the format, he assures us

Mahela Jayawardene has said the new ODI rules, which allow only four men in the deep, will make sides reluctant to play more than one spinner. This piece by our Sri Lanka correspondent, Andrew Fernando, ponders whether the ICC's attempt to inject aggression into ODIs could hurt the modern spinner even further

1.50 pm Welcome everyone to ESPNcricinfo's coverage of the third ODI. We are 40 minutes away from the start and our man in Pallekele, Andrew Fernando, says that it has just stopped drizzling so we can expect the match to start on time.


Malinga to Nicol, no run, moving away, good length, stays calm and pushes to off


Malinga to Nicol, no run, straighter now, good length again, pushes hard to mid off

Two slips


Malinga to Nicol, no run, still straighter, right on the stumps this time, he keeps bat close to pad and squeezes it out to point


Malinga to Nicol, no run, and there he is at it again, like in the previous game, good length ball moving away neatly past the forward prod, not much bounce


Malinga to Nicol, no run, away shape again, this time Nicol is not getting beaten, he lets it go

oli: "Interesting to see if Nicol actually manages to edge it off Malinga." He did do that in the previous game, only for Angelo to let it go at first slip


Malinga to Nicol, 1 run, length ball guided down to third man for a single

End of over 1 (1 run) New Zealand 1/0 (RR: 1.00)

    • RJ Nicol 1 (6b)
    • BJ Watling 0 (0b)
    • SL Malinga 1-0-1-0

Kula with the second new ball, keeper standing up immediately


Kulasekara to Nicol, no run, lovely inswing into the right hander, pitches full around off, pushed to mid on


Kulasekara to Nicol, no run, moves in from a good length now, just outside off, defended


Kulasekara to Nicol, 2 runs, shaping in once more, but this time the angle was on the pads, and it is sent down behind square leg


Kulasekara to Nicol, no run, curling in again, lots of movement, but moving into the pads sharply, and dribbles away


Kulasekara to Nicol, no run, super, this one holds its line now, angled in slightly, and then kicks and straightens off the seam, beaten completely


Kulasekara to Nicol, 1 wide, Kumar tested with one swinging wildly down leg, manages to stick a glove out


Kulasekara to Nicol, 3 runs, turned neatly with the inward shape off his pads, Thirimanne covers a lot of ground from deep square leg, dives, and saves a run

End of over 2 (6 runs) New Zealand 7/0 (RR: 3.50)

    • RJ Nicol 6 (12b)
    • BJ Watling 0 (0b)
    • KMDN Kulasekara 1-0-6-0
    • SL Malinga 1-0-1-0

KevinW: "With the new fielding restrictions, all cricket playing nations should setup academies to convert all spin bowlers to pace bowlers and a period of rehabilitation of course." So now we'll have quick bowlers with a spinner's heart


Malinga to Nicol, no run, driven from close to the toe end of the bat to covers


Malinga to Nicol, 1 run, bat in front of pad and runs an away going delivery wide of point

Watling is opening today, and he is on strike for the first time


Malinga to Watling, 1 run, away first ball with a single to third man off a length ball


Malinga to Nicol, no run, back of a length for once, he mistimes a forcing stroke from the crease


Malinga to Nicol, OUT, that's gone low into Jayawardene's hands at second slip, so Nicol got beaten at least ten times on Sunday and made 46, today he edges one early and is gone, fullish length on off, brings him forward, enough away movement to take the edge off the push and fly low to Mahela, they check for the no-ball and the catch, clean on both counts

RJ Nicol c Jayawardene b Malinga 7 (12m 16b 0x4 0x6) SR: 43.75

Brendon in at No 3

Andrew: "Spinners? Wasn't T20 cricket meant to kill that lot off?" Probably it wasn't enough


Malinga to BB McCullum, no run, welcomed with a bouncer, goes down under it

End of over 3 (2 runs) New Zealand 9/1 (RR: 3.00)

    • BB McCullum 0 (1b)
    • BJ Watling 1 (1b)
    • SL Malinga 2-0-3-1
    • KMDN Kulasekara 1-0-6-0

Keeper standing back now to Kula


Kulasekara to Watling, no run, wide and straightish outside off, left alone


Kulasekara to Watling, no run, comes in now from some way outside off, he leans forward and defends


Kulasekara to Watling, no run, bounce now from a length, straight and comfortably outside off, he lets it go

Neil pronounces his verdict: "Things in life that are certain- Death, taxes and New Zealand losing an early wicket."


Kulasekara to Watling, 1 run, thick outside edge along the ground to third man as he drives


Kulasekara to BB McCullum, no run, length ball, he moves across and outside off to defend down the pitch


Kulasekara to BB McCullum, 1 run, came forward, it bounced from a length, he adjusted well to run it to third man

End of over 4 (2 runs) New Zealand 11/1 (RR: 2.75)

    • BB McCullum 1 (3b)
    • BJ Watling 2 (5b)
    • KMDN Kulasekara 2-0-8-0
    • SL Malinga 2-0-3-1

Marcus: "Is a fast bowler with a spinner's heart sort of like the opposite of Ray Price?" Or a Roelof van der Merwe


Malinga to BB McCullum, no run, moving away, but pitching slightly back of a good length, and is left alone early


Malinga to BB McCullum, no run, sharp length ball hits the bat hard as he pushes forward, extra cover prevents the single with a short sprint to his right


Malinga to BB McCullum, no run, right on off stump, fuller too, he is in the crease, bat and pad together and defends


Malinga to BB McCullum, 1 run, single is on this time, drops a climbing length ball in front of extra cover and they are through


Malinga to Watling, no run, back and across to one just outside off and blocks


Malinga to Watling, no run, 138 kph from Malinga, good length around off, defended carefully, no chance of a run

End of over 5 (1 run) New Zealand 12/1 (RR: 2.40)

    • BJ Watling 2 (7b)
    • BB McCullum 2 (7b)
    • SL Malinga 3-0-4-1
    • KMDN Kulasekara 2-0-8-0

Kulasekara to BB McCullum, no run, phew, that is too much movement, that has snaked in from a mile outside off, started late too, and then hit him in front of off and middle, they appeal for leg before, but there was too much angle on it


Kulasekara to BB McCullum, 1 leg bye, inswing again, dribbles off the pads square to leg


Kulasekara to Watling, no run, stays in the crease and guides a length ball with an open face, but Dilshan gets in the way at point with a dive


Kulasekara to Watling, no run, moving in sharply once more, he plays it well, staying back and pushing to mid on


Kulasekara to Watling, no run, straighter one now, draws him outside off to the line, pushed to cover

Floodlights slowly coming on, as are some clouds


Kulasekara to Watling, no run, good length, lets it go outside off

End of over 6 (1 run, maiden) New Zealand 13/1 (RR: 2.16)

    • BJ Watling 2 (11b)
    • BB McCullum 2 (9b)
    • KMDN Kulasekara 3-1-8-0
    • SL Malinga 3-0-4-1

Malinga to BB McCullum, 1 run, goes forward, it bounces from a length, he adjusts to drop it in front of mid on

It is growing darker now


Malinga to Watling, 1 run, straight on middle stump, good length, turned wide of midwicket

Mark: "Interesting move bringing McCullum in at 3. With the new rules, if they are going back to more of a graft approach in the early overs and accelerate later, you could make a good case for Kane Williamson coming in at 3 and saving McCullum for the slog." At least, KW will get a bat that way


Malinga to BB McCullum, 2 runs, edgy, nervy, pokes at a wide one, it flies past the two slips, but third man stops it with a dive, almost as it reaches the rope


Malinga to BB McCullum, no run, good length, he opens the face, runs it to covers and trots out purposefully, but has to go back


Malinga to BB McCullum, 5 runs, one run taken and five runs scored, pushed to extra cover, throw fired in, hits the running McCullum's bat and races to the deep midwicket rope


Malinga to Watling, no run, pitched up, pushed hard to extra cover

End of over 7 (9 runs) New Zealand 22/1 (RR: 3.14)

    • BJ Watling 3 (13b)
    • BB McCullum 10 (13b)
    • SL Malinga 4-0-13-1
    • KMDN Kulasekara 3-1-8-0

Kulasekara to BB McCullum, no run, lovely inswing from Kula again, played out to mid on, non-striker has raced out, but gets back in time

Growing darker and darker all the time


Kulasekara to BB McCullum, no run, pushed down the pitch


Kulasekara to BB McCullum, 1 run, outside edge, there is only one slip now, and it flies safely to third man, Kula getting him to drive a pitched up ball


Kulasekara to Watling, FOUR, first boundary of the game, in the eighth over, Kula pitching it up, not too much inswing, and he gets behind the line on the front foot to caress it to the right of mid off


Kulasekara to Watling, no run, similar delivery, he tries to repeat the stroke, doesn't time it this time


Kulasekara to Watling, no run, wide, he reaches out, and crashes it straight to point, pity

End of over 8 (5 runs) New Zealand 27/1 (RR: 3.37)

    • BJ Watling 7 (16b 1x4)
    • BB McCullum 11 (16b)
    • KMDN Kulasekara 4-1-13-0
    • SL Malinga 4-0-13-1

Angelo to bowl


Mathews to BB McCullum, no run, gentle length ball around off, played out quietly


Mathews to BB McCullum, no run, moves across and punches a length ball to mid on


Mathews to BB McCullum, no run, gets across, behind the line and punches back to the bowler


Mathews to BB McCullum, 1 run, good length, whipped, from outside off, behind square leg

Bad signs, groundstaff ready to race on, with the covers, it has started drizzling


Mathews to Watling, no run, defends a length ball around off


Mathews to Watling, no run, punched from the crease, but short extra cover dives extravagantly to stop it

Play about to resume, but the clouds are still hanging heavy and low

4.25 pm We will have a start at 4.45 pm - 48 overs a side and a 30-minute innings break

4 pm He was waiting for his piece to be replugged, wasn't he? Andrew instantly gives us this news - the rain has stopped and the covers are coming off

It is not looking as bad on the ground as it is looking up in the skies.

3.50 pm Andrew says it is still drizzling

Time to replug this fine piece from Andrew which discusses whether the new rule allowing only four men in the deep in ODIs will cripple spinners

Kushan: "No body talks about Dambulla cricket ground . It's situated in a dry zone. Pallekele situated in rainy zone." Kushan, the tragedy is that the political zones keep shifting.

3.20 pm Still raining, informs Andrew Fernando, our man at the ground. But it is lighter now

Gareth: "@Chandu. FYI, the position requires you to own your own snorkel and lifejacket." Which reminds me, Andrew misplaced his lifejacket last time he apparated. Happy snorkelling, Andrew, is all I can say now. Of course, when it comes to drown, he can always apparate again. Clever fellow

PDTM: "Inaccessable as Hambantota is, I'm sure it's nothing like going between Perth and Melbourne to follow the cricket around. Of course, if Andrew heads south for our summer, he might get the privilege of that trip as well." I tell you he'd rather prefer Perth to Melbourne than Colombo to Hambantota.

samith: "There is no rain in Colombo. Not sure who transferred the matches to Pallekale. Must be our forecasters :)" Samith, you don't have much choice if the Premadasa gets flooded.

Chandu: "Do you have any vacancy for the post of "OUR MAN AT THE GROUND"? I just love that job !!!" Chandu, if only our budgets could afford having a man at every international ground, imagine the number of jobs that would be created. For now, poor Andrew has to shuttle between Colombo, Galle, Kandy and that immensely accessible ground down south in Hambantota. Of course, Andrew can apparate and disapparate at will. During the World Twenty20, he once miraculously disapparated from Hambantota only to drop in bleary eyed right onto one of the hill tops in Kandy

3.10 pm The covers are on, the players are off, steady drizzle on at the moment, and getting slightly heavier now. No wind too, the clouds could be here to stay for a while

Dave: "Phew! Glad of the rain. This frenetic action was winding my nerves up something chronic. Is it really wise to score runs so fast when rain is expected and the run chase could be shortened?"

End of over 9 (1 run) New Zealand 28/1 (RR: 3.11)

    • BJ Watling 7 (18b 1x4)
    • BB McCullum 12 (20b)
    • AD Mathews 1-0-1-0
    • KMDN Kulasekara 4-1-13-0

Perera to bowl after the break


Perera to BB McCullum, 1 run, that kicked off a length, outside off, he takes a hand off the bat and runs it to third man


Perera to Watling, no run, punched from the crease to extra cover


Perera to Watling, 1 run, widish, short of a length, slashed to third man


Perera to BB McCullum, no run, some width again, but he mistimes a forcing stroke to extra cover


Perera to BB McCullum, no run, good delivery, good length, moving away outside off, left alone with a flourish


Perera to BB McCullum, no run, steered straight to point off the back foot

End of over 10 (2 runs) New Zealand 30/1 (RR: 3.00)

    • BB McCullum 13 (24b)
    • BJ Watling 8 (20b 1x4)
    • NLTC Perera 1-0-2-0
    • AD Mathews 1-0-1-0

Mathews to Watling, no run, another mistimed push to mid on, length ball not quite coming on, not getting up much too


Mathews to Watling, 1 run, dropped by the bowler, a full loopy delivery was scooped straight back at Mathews, decent height, and pops out


Mathews to BB McCullum, OUT, Mathews gets one next ball, McCullum got too far across looking to work a length ball square to leg, was hit on the edge of the pad, in front of leg stump, and on first glance, looks like the angle could have taken it down leg

BB McCullum lbw b Mathews 13 (33m 25b 0x4 0x6) SR: 52.00

In walks Ross Taylor with a glance at the dark skies


Mathews to Taylor, no run, beats him first up with one moving away from a good length outside off


Mathews to Taylor, no run, this one came in, but after passing the batsman who left it alone


Mathews to Taylor, no run, and again, Mathews has put down another catch, pitched up delivery getting an airy drive from Taylor, straight at Mathews and straight out of his hands, oh dear, Mathews has his hand on his face, Mahela grimaces

End of over 11 (1 run) New Zealand 31/2 (RR: 2.81)

    • LRPL Taylor 0 (3b)
    • BJ Watling 9 (22b 1x4)
    • AD Mathews 2-0-2-1
    • NLTC Perera 1-0-2-0

Perera to Watling, 1 run, nudges a length ball off the stumps to midwicket


Perera to Taylor, FOUR, that was heading for the pad sharply, but Taylor gets the bat around in time to tickle it fine


Perera to Taylor, no run, they are targetting the stumps consistently, another one pitched up, defended back to the bowler


Perera to Taylor, no run, width given this time, and Taylor has a go at the cut to get beaten

That was Mathews' 50th ODI wicket, as many of you have pointed out


Perera to Taylor, no run, leans forward and pushes back down the track


Perera to Taylor, no run, neat, climbs from back of a length and holds its line outside off, he gets bat out of the way

End of over 12 (5 runs) New Zealand 36/2 (RR: 3.00)

    • LRPL Taylor 4 (8b 1x4)
    • BJ Watling 10 (23b 1x4)
    • NLTC Perera 2-0-7-0
    • AD Mathews 2-0-2-1

Mathews to Watling, no run, pitched up on the stumps, turned to midwicket


Mathews to Watling, 1 run, another mistimed push with an angled bat down the ground, mid on races to pick up the ball but is late in throwing it, Watling's dive has him safely in despite the direct hit


Mathews to Taylor, 1 run

Surprise, surprise, it is drizzling again


Mathews to Watling, no run, that could have been close, it nipped in after pitching on a good length around off, but an inside edge saved the batsman before it crashed into pad


Mathews to Watling, no run, length ball tentatively defended late from the crease


Mathews to Watling, no run, defended off the front foot

End of over 13 (2 runs) New Zealand 38/2 (RR: 2.92)

    • BJ Watling 11 (28b 1x4)
    • LRPL Taylor 5 (9b 1x4)
    • AD Mathews 3-0-4-1
    • NLTC Perera 2-0-7-0

Perera to Taylor, no run, pushed down the pitch, but mid off and mid on converge to cut it off


Perera to Taylor, no run, bounce outside off, he runs it to point, almost off the bottom glove


Perera to Taylor, 1 leg bye, hit him on the pad this time but it was going down leg again, and was high too


Perera to Watling, 1 run, rides the bounce and punches off the back foot past point


Perera to Taylor, no run, good length, off stump line, defended solidly back to the bowler


Perera to Taylor, 1 run, widish delivery crashed away to sweeper cover

So New Zealand have 19 overs to do something about their current run-rate of under three

7.05 pm This is incredible now. It's been an hour and 15 minutes since the rain stopped, we have lost about 18 overs in that period, and we are still clueless about when play will resume. And just as I am about to explode in rain-induced rage, Andrew helpfully tells me that play will resume at 7.30 pm. We have lost a further 30 overs, in addition to the four lost to the previous interruption. It will be 33 overs a side now

Mark sums up the day: "So, in summary, we can expect more rain around 7:25?" I am not going to bet against it

pauly mac: "Most influential player of the series = Cumulus Nimbus, he doesn't bat or bowl nor does he offer much in the field. But, he always turns up for the big games and can just take a game away from a team in one over. Furthermore he plays some of his best stuff in Sri Lanka!! Kudos to Cumulus Nimbus i say!!"

7 pm Andrew Fernando, our man braving it out in damp Pallekele, has noticed some activity finally. Men are out with the drying ropes again, he says

6.55 pm No activity, no drying, no playing, no nothing. Only waiting. Godot might have arrived by now

Mark: "Abhishek, when will drop-by-drop coverage of the rain continue?" As soon as it resumes, Mark.

6.45 pm We are in for some more delay, the groundstaff are still at work

6.30 pm Resumption at 6.45 pm

6.15 pm It is not raining at the moment, we are awaiting word on the time for resumption of play

5.50 pm The rain has stopped for now, and the hardworking groundsmen are at work again

Suren: "Agree with Kishore.... like the Ashes, this series must be called "Rains." Will make a nice line too - Rain ruined Rains

Kishore: "This series should be called Washout series and a bottle with rain water should be given as a trophy to the winners."

Eden: "NZ might have missed a trick in the last game by using Rob Nicol's bowling before the rain stopped the Sri Lanka innings. Taylor should have used a wicket-taking bowler like Southee or Mills instead with heavy rain imminent to try and take a wicket. One wicket or two surely would have tipped the Duckworth-Lewis equation in NZ's favour."

5.35 pm Slightly encouraging news - the rain has got lighter, and the heavy clouds have stopped rolling in

5.20 pm Absolutely pelting down now, says Andrew

5.05 pm The rain is back, the covers are on, and now, we wait, again

Our man at the ground, Andrew Fernando: "Sri Lanka must have the wettest, hardest working groundsmen in the world." They have to cover the entire ground too

Deva R: "Please add a ball-by-ball weather coverage as a part of your commentary. It will come in handy..!" Not a bad suggestion, I wonder how comms would appear in that case. Perera to McCullum, good length delivery tucked away through square leg, they take two and the weather holds up for another delivery, but even as McCullum completes the second, drops of rain start falling onto the ground, and as Perera walks back to his followthrough, the groundsmen rush on with the covers

End of over 14 (3 runs) New Zealand 41/2 (RR: 2.92)

    • LRPL Taylor 6 (14b 1x4)
    • BJ Watling 12 (29b 1x4)
    • NLTC Perera 3-0-9-0
    • AD Mathews 3-0-4-1

Thisara Perera is on all fours on the pitch, giving it a close look. Jeevan Mendis has the ball

Three bowlers to bowl a maximum of seven overs and two to bowl six. Batting Powerplay cut to three overs and first Powerplay to seven


Mendis to Taylor, 1 run, tossed up on leg stump and a nudged single to midwicket is on


Mendis to Watling, no run, lovely, hit on the back pad flap with a flighted delivery that pitched middle and spun away, Mahela cannot believe, as usual, that the appeal has been turned down, was missing off with the turn


Mendis to Watling, 1 run


Mendis to Taylor, OUT, brilliant stuff from Jeevan, he's raced towards short midwicket, where Taylor had nudged the tossed up delivery, and hit the non-striker's stumps direct, Taylor has not even bothered to wait for the third umpire, he knew he was short

LRPL Taylor run out 7 (17m 16b 1x4 0x6) SR: 43.75


Mendis to Watling, no run


Mendis to Watling, no run, googly again, outside off, he backed away to cut, but it came in a bit and beat him

End of over 15 (2 runs) New Zealand 43/3 (RR: 2.86)

    • BJ Watling 13 (33b 1x4)
    • JDP Oram 0 (0b)
    • BMAJ Mendis 1-0-2-0
    • NLTC Perera 3-0-9-0

James: "To get a competitive total, NZ need to score about 150 in 19 overs. I'd put Gayle, Samuels and Pollard as the next 3 in."

Oram gets a promotion, Dilshan a bowl


Dilshan to Oram, 1 run, drives a full delivery down to sweeper cover


Dilshan to Watling, no run, stayed low as it spun in to leg, stabbed away


Dilshan to Watling, 1 run, wide outside off and steered to deep point


Dilshan to Oram, no run, that was close, it went straight on from round the stumps, Oram was playing for the turn, thick inside edge runs past the stumps to short fine


Dilshan to Oram, 1 run, gets off strike with a single to off


Dilshan to Watling, 1 run, pushed uppishly, but safely past the non-striker to long on

End of over 16 (4 runs) New Zealand 47/3 (RR: 2.93)

    • BJ Watling 15 (36b 1x4)
    • JDP Oram 2 (3b)
    • TM Dilshan 1-0-4-0
    • BMAJ Mendis 1-0-2-0

Mendis to Watling, 1 wide, misses the sweep as this one carries full down the leg side


Mendis to Watling, no run, tries to sweep again, this one was floated up slower, hit on the pad


Mendis to Watling, 1 run, succeeds in sweeping now, it was around off, sends it to deep square


Mendis to Oram, OUT, that looked dead straight, Oram tried a reverse sweep to a length delivery, it was the googly, Oram missed and was caught right in front, umpire Dharmasena sends him back, replays show the ball pitched just outside leg stump

JDP Oram lbw b Mendis 2 (8m 4b 0x4 0x6) SR: 50.00

Franklin in now, no sign of Williamson

James isn't impressed: "Is Herath playing as a batsman? Like Kane is as a bowler?"


Mendis to Franklin, no run, pushed down the pitch


Mendis to Franklin, 1 run, legbreak staying low, into the pads, forced in front of square leg


Mendis to Watling, no run, squeezed out down the track

End of over 17 (3 runs) New Zealand 50/4 (RR: 2.94)

    • BJ Watling 16 (39b 1x4)
    • JEC Franklin 1 (2b)
    • BMAJ Mendis 2-0-5-1
    • TM Dilshan 1-0-4-0

Dilshan to Franklin, 1 run, leans out to drive a full delivery to sweeper cover

Stiaan: "I'd say, and this is just a hunch, but New Zealand cricket looks to be in a dark dark place..."


Dilshan to Watling, 1 run, whipped with the spin to deep midwicket


Dilshan to Franklin, no run, reaches forward, opens the face, and finds point


Dilshan to Franklin, 1 run, tossed up, pushes it past extra cover


Dilshan to Watling, 1 run, punched down to long on


Dilshan to Franklin, 1 run, full, drives it down to long off

End of over 18 (5 runs) New Zealand 55/4 (RR: 3.05)

    • JEC Franklin 4 (6b)
    • BJ Watling 18 (41b 1x4)
    • TM Dilshan 2-0-9-0
    • BMAJ Mendis 2-0-5-1

Nick: "Seems NZ will do anything to keep the right and left hand combo. Next in will be Boult"


Mendis to Franklin, 1 run


Mendis to Watling, no run, waits for the legbreak to spin away from a length, and punches to extra cover


Mendis to Watling, FOUR, slog-swept, saw it flighted and went down on a knee to slam the googly from off over midwicket


Mendis to Watling, no run, leading edge, he went across to work a legbreak to the on side but closed the face early


Mendis to Watling, no run, forced hard to extra cover


Mendis to Watling, 1 run, cuts a wide legbreak to sweeper cover

End of over 19 (6 runs) New Zealand 61/4 (RR: 3.21)

    • BJ Watling 23 (46b 2x4)
    • JEC Franklin 5 (7b)
    • BMAJ Mendis 3-0-11-1
    • TM Dilshan 2-0-9-0

Herath comes on now


Herath to Watling, no run, flighted on off, quickish, pushed back to the bowler


Herath to Watling, 1 run, comes in from round the stumps, punched to covers


Herath to Franklin, 1 run, quick into the pads, worked away to deep square leg


Herath to Watling, no run, pushed through full at 96 kph outside off, he is beaten on the drive


Herath to Watling, 1 run, flat outside off, cut to deep point

Jeff is getting deep into tactics: "Left / Right combo might be a great idea right now actually, it'll slow down the overs which will increase the chance of rain creating a no-result match later on."


Herath to Franklin, 1 run, tries to hit out but fails to get much on the full delivery, it dribbles away on the off past the keeper

End of over 20 (4 runs) New Zealand 65/4 (RR: 3.25)

    • JEC Franklin 7 (9b)
    • BJ Watling 25 (50b 2x4)
    • HMRKB Herath 1-0-4-0
    • BMAJ Mendis 3-0-11-1

Mathews to Franklin, no run, length ball around off, comes forward to defend to cover

Tim: "7 bowlers inside the first 20 overs. You'd think Sri Lanka were being belted to all parts the way they've chopped and changed." Modern theory might say that is precisely the reason they have not been belted to all parts


Mathews to Franklin, no run, comes down the pitch, finds short midwicket


Mathews to Franklin, 1 run, runs a back of a length ball to third man


Mathews to Watling, 2 runs, carves a length ball past extra cover and wide of sweeper cover


Mathews to Watling, 1 bye, slower one, only 94 kph, he is beaten as he lunges forward at the line outside off


Mathews to Franklin, no run, forced down the track but bowler gets a hand to it

End of over 21 (4 runs) New Zealand 69/4 (RR: 3.28)

    • JEC Franklin 8 (13b)
    • BJ Watling 27 (52b 2x4)
    • AD Mathews 4-0-7-1
    • HMRKB Herath 1-0-4-0

Herath to Watling, 1 run, that spun sharply, angled in on middle and leg, and ending on off, he was back in the crease, and got a thick edge to short third


Herath to Franklin, 1 run, pushes softly to mid off and takes on the throw, which misses


Herath to Watling, 1 run, dropped, in fact not attempted at all, in the end, top-edged sweep, Malinga after it from short fine leg, gets close to the ball, and then pulls his hands away, fine leg was far away from Malinga, strange reaction indeed from him


Herath to Franklin, no run, flicked hard but straight to short fine


Herath to Franklin, FOUR, down the track, makes room and lifts a full delivery down the ground


Herath to Franklin, FOUR, line is down the pads, and Franklin gets down and gets enough on the paddle to send the ball wide of short fine

End of over 22 (11 runs) New Zealand 80/4 (RR: 3.63)

    • JEC Franklin 17 (17b 2x4)
    • BJ Watling 29 (54b 2x4)
    • HMRKB Herath 2-0-15-0
    • AD Mathews 4-0-7-1

Mathews to Watling, 1 run, down to long on for a single


Mathews to Franklin, 1 wide, good length, straight and down the leg side


Mathews to Franklin, 1 run, launches a pitched up delivery in the air, down to long on, didn;t time it


Mathews to Watling, no run, makes room, the length ball is on middle, the cut sends it straight to point


Mathews to Watling, FOUR, deep midwicket targetted again by Watling, picks a length delivery over the man in the ring, no one in the deep


Mathews to Watling, no run, fine comeback, wide outside off in the blockhole, he cannot connect


Mathews to Watling, 1 run, makes room, Angelo slows it down, forced to deep point

End of over 23 (8 runs) New Zealand 88/4 (RR: 3.82)

    • BJ Watling 35 (59b 3x4)
    • JEC Franklin 18 (18b 2x4)
    • AD Mathews 5-0-15-1
    • HMRKB Herath 2-0-15-0

Perera to Watling, no run, length ball pushed to midwicket


Perera to Watling, FOUR, fine shot, Watling had the width, he got to the line, and placed it well wide of sweeper cover, looked graceful too


Perera to Watling, 1 run, ungainly this time as he tries to hoick this one, down to long on


Perera to Franklin, 1 wide, sent down the leg side from a length


Perera to Franklin, no run, Perera appeals loudly but the ball pitched outside, inside edge too


Perera to Franklin, SIX, superb timing from Franklin, walks across the stumps and lifts a length ball from middle over square leg, beats the man in the deep


Perera to Franklin, 1 run, drops a short of a length ball close to the pitch on off

End of over 24 (13 runs) New Zealand 101/4 (RR: 4.20)

    • JEC Franklin 25 (21b 2x4 1x6)
    • BJ Watling 40 (62b 4x4)
    • NLTC Perera 4-0-22-0
    • AD Mathews 5-0-15-1

Kulasekara to Franklin, 1 run


Kulasekara to Watling, 2 runs, another well-placed drive from Watling, wide of sweeper cover for two


Kulasekara to Watling, 1 run, full toss mowed down to long on, would have wanted to time it better


Kulasekara to Franklin, no run, right on middle stump, slow good length delivery, defended carefully


Kulasekara to Franklin, no run, close to the blockhole, and squeezed out to leg


Kulasekara to Franklin, OUT, one shot too many for Franklin, charges out, misses the length delivery, which crashes into top of leg

JEC Franklin b Kulasekara 26 (34m 25b 2x4 1x6) SR: 104.00

Sundar: "@Abhishek : Modern theory actually confuses me. If a bowler is bowling one line and length and he gets carted around, then he is predictable and if he is doing good, then he has been consistent. If bowlers are chopped and changed and if they are hit, then they are not being allowed to settle, but if it is successful, then they are not letting the batsmen settle. All this tells me is that there are no right or wrong strategies, only successful and unsuccessful ones. If the Irfan opening experiment had succeeded (and it has before), then MSD would have been hailed, as it is he was crucified.." Agree with everything, Sundar, except the part on MS. That was an absurdly defensive move, immaterial of everything else, including its eventual failure

End of over 25 (4 runs) New Zealand 105/5 (RR: 4.20)

    • BJ Watling 43 (64b 4x4)
    • KMDN Kulasekara 5-1-17-1
    • NLTC Perera 4-0-22-0

Herath to Watling, 1 run, tossed up ball driven to sweeper cover

KW finally gets a bat


Herath to Williamson, 1 run, pushed down to long off


Herath to Watling, 1 run, backed away, took it from close to middle stump and sent it to sweeper cover


Herath to Williamson, 1 run


Herath to Watling, 1 run, standing a couple of feet outside leg, and punching one off middle to sweeper cover

ayden: "People say that the NZ team is in its worst position its been in years - but it doesn't help that we get sent on tours that get rained out, and short tours with ridiculous 2-game series all of the time. We play far less games than the top-tier nations, against the lower-tiered nations. Its a downward spiral - how are we supposed to get better and blood this talent that we seem to have?" Thumping the low-tier nations would be a start


Herath to Williamson, no run, defended off the front foot

End of over 26 (5 runs) New Zealand 110/5 (RR: 4.23)

    • KS Williamson 2 (3b)
    • BJ Watling 46 (67b 4x4)
    • HMRKB Herath 3-0-20-0
    • KMDN Kulasekara 5-1-17-1

Jeevan is back


Mendis to Watling, 2 runs, half tracker, stays low, and the pull does not have enough power to beat deep midwicket's run to his left


Mendis to Watling, 1 run, turning away outside off, punched to sweeper cover


Mendis to Williamson, 1 run, tossed up full and patted down to wide long on


Mendis to Watling, 1 run, cannot time the punch as he backs away but the single to extra cover takes him to another half-century, rare and refreshing consistency from an NZ batsman


Mendis to Williamson, 2 runs, clipped wide of deep midwicket


Mendis to Williamson, OUT, KW is gone, skipped out to go down the ground, only went as far as mid on, ball hit the inner part of the bat

KS Williamson c Mathews b Mendis 5 (9m 6b 0x4 0x6) SR: 83.33

End of over 27 (7 runs) New Zealand 117/6 (RR: 4.33)

    • BJ Watling 50 (70b 4x4)
    • BMAJ Mendis 4-0-18-2
    • HMRKB Herath 3-0-20-0

Malinga returns, he's got three left


Malinga to NL McCullum, no run, starts back of a length, defended onto the pitch


Malinga to NL McCullum, 2 runs, length ball coming into the pads, worked behind square leg


Malinga to NL McCullum, no run, opens the face and runs a shortish delivery to point

Tim: "Modern cricketing theory is very interesting but I'd love to see it truly put to the test. Remove bowler restrictions on overs and fielding restrictions in ODIs and see how the game is really played. Right now the game is formulaic, making the rules more flexible will lead to more exciting cricket."


Malinga to NL McCullum, 1 run, whips a length delivery to deep square off the pad


Malinga to Watling, 1 run, very full, on the stumps, they were fully exposed as batsman was standing outside leg, squeezed out to third man


Malinga to NL McCullum, no run, that is sharp, nearly 140 kph, short and into the body, he was not expecting it, tries to swing it belateedly, it carries on past him

End of over 28 (4 runs) New Zealand 121/6 (RR: 4.32)

    • NL McCullum 3 (5b)
    • BJ Watling 51 (71b 4x4)
    • SL Malinga 5-0-17-1
    • BMAJ Mendis 4-0-18-2

Mendis to Watling, 1 run, does not quite get hold of the slog sweep, still gets it out to deep midwicket


Mendis to NL McCullum, 1 run, down for the reverse sweep early, drags it wide of short third man off a bottom edge


Mendis to Watling, FOUR, full, very wide, and Watling puts it away to the right of sweeper cover, whose effort is in vain


Mendis to Watling, 2 runs, tossed up low full toss, eased wide of long off, they push hard for the second


Mendis to Watling, 1 wide, walks across but leaves alone a wide one


Mendis to Watling, FOUR, heaves a slog sweep, and we will see more of these strokes fetching boundaries, there is no deep midwicket


Mendis to Watling, 2 wides, straight and quick outside off, chopped square for one


Mendis to NL McCullum, 1 run, straight and quick outside off, chopped square for one

End of over 29 (16 runs) New Zealand 137/6 (RR: 4.72)

    • NL McCullum 5 (7b)
    • BJ Watling 62 (75b 6x4)
    • BMAJ Mendis 5-0-34-2
    • SL Malinga 5-0-17-1

Malinga to NL McCullum, SIX, that is some connection, he's gone back in his crease, swivelled and hooked the bouncer flat over the deep square leg boundary


Malinga to NL McCullum, 1 run, turns a full slower one to midwicket, whose throw misses


Malinga to Watling, 1 run, very full again, squeezed out to sweeper cover


Malinga to NL McCullum, no run, goes full for the stumps, Nathan backing away, and finding the bowler as bat closes in his hands


Malinga to NL McCullum, no run, low full toss now, straight to extra cover this time


Malinga to NL McCullum, no run, in the blockhole, 137 kph, dug back to the bowler, top stuff

End of over 30 (8 runs) New Zealand 145/6 (RR: 4.83)

    • NL McCullum 12 (12b 1x6)
    • BJ Watling 63 (76b 6x4)
    • SL Malinga 6-0-25-1
    • BMAJ Mendis 5-0-34-2

Kulasekara to Watling, 1 run, slow and wide, driven to sweeper cover


Kulasekara to NL McCullum, 1 run, low full toss patted down to long off


Kulasekara to Watling, FOUR, power and placement, down the track, and carves the length ball hard through point, man in the deep cannot stop it with a dive


Kulasekara to Watling, FOUR, another one, walks out again, this one is back of a length, he adjusts to cut it behind point, no chance for sweeper cover at all this time


Kulasekara to Watling, 2 runs, slow again, he is down the pitch again, but finds sweeper cover now


Kulasekara to Watling, 2 runs, follows him as he backs away to leg, Watling uses the angle into him to swing to square leg

End of over 31 (14 runs) New Zealand 159/6 (RR: 5.12)

    • BJ Watling 76 (81b 8x4)
    • NL McCullum 13 (13b 1x6)
    • KMDN Kulasekara 6-1-31-1
    • SL Malinga 6-0-25-1

Malinga to NL McCullum, no run, Watling was gone had the throw from extra cover hit, he had gone too far out, Nathan finding the man as he pushes a yorker out


Malinga to NL McCullum, 1 run, low full toss, worked square off the pad


Malinga to Watling, FOUR, Watling is playing a gem, he;s picked up the slow length delivery and mauled it out of long on's reach


Malinga to Watling, FOUR, full toss, on the pads, Watling deserves some luck now, inside edge flies fine down the leg side, between his pads


Malinga to Watling, FOUR, outstanding, very low full toss, close to being a yorker, Walting opens up slightly, and carves it past extra cover


Malinga to Watling, 2 runs, he's launching them all around now, scythes a full delivery through midwicket and comes back, needed a better throw to the keeper, he's onto 90 now

End of over 32 (15 runs) New Zealand 174/6 (RR: 5.43)

    • BJ Watling 90 (85b 11x4)
    • NL McCullum 14 (15b 1x6)
    • SL Malinga 7-0-40-1
    • KMDN Kulasekara 6-1-31-1

Umpire Dharmasena is signalling the 'batting Powerplay', which will be only one of the possible three overs, as New Zealand had got the full ten overs of the first Powerplay, instead of the revised seven


Kulasekara to NL McCullum, 1 run


Kulasekara to Watling, FOUR, down the track, and lofts a slower length delivery over extra cover


Kulasekara to Watling, 1 run, full, and there for the taking, but he's flicked it straight to backward square leg


Kulasekara to NL McCullum, SIX, there goes N Mac, full, in the slot, and murdered high down the ground


Kulasekara to NL McCullum, 1 run, slower one, 93.5 kph, he has a slog at it, sends it down to long off


Kulasekara to Watling, 1 run, he went across eyeing deep square leg, but could not connect with the sweep to a length ball

BJ Watling, what a find he is turning out to be for New Zealand. He was on 30 off 56, he's ended on 96 off 88. Clean, precise hitting. It is the highest score by a New Zealand batsman against Sri Lanka in Sri Lanka in ODis.

Sri Lanka have some chasing to do. They will have to make 197 as per the D/L calculation

End of over 33 (14 runs) New Zealand 188/6

    • BJ Watling 96 (88b 12x4)
    • NL McCullum 22 (18b 2x6)
    • KMDN Kulasekara 7-1-45-1
    • SL Malinga 7-0-40-1





  • RHB


  • RHB