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June 12, 2009
Wayward start of the day
It wasn't as appalling as Mohammad Sami's 17-baller against Bangladesh in 2004 but Sohail Tanvir bowled a shocker of a first over at Lord's. He began with a front-foot no-ball, bowled two wides, another front-foot no-ball, followed by a third wide. He ran in 11 times in all and the Sri Lankan openers hit three of the six legal deliveries for fours to take 18 off the over.
Jinxed end of the day
Tanvir continued to be wayward in his second over, bowling two more wides and another no-ball. Perhaps it was something to do with the end he was operating from - the Nursery End. Umar Gul and Shahid Afridi also bowled a leg-side wide each in their first overs from that end. In fact none of the extras in the first seven overs - and there were plenty - came from the Pavilion End.
First six of the day
Mohammad Aamer, who's incredibly only 17 years old, bowled a tight first over against Sanath Jayasuriya, pitching on a length which did not allow the batsman the space to drive, cut or pull. However, in his second over, he dropped a fraction short. It was all Jayasuriya needed to swivel and pull the ball flat over the deep square leg boundary.
Speed-breaker of the day
The Sri Lankan openers had raced to 65 after the Powerplay and were on course for a total near 200. Enter Afridi, who has been making up for his poor batting with his hustling leg spin. He did not disappoint, forcing a mis-hit from Jayasuriya which landed in Younis Khan's hands at square leg. A more vicious delivery - a speedy googly - crashed into Tillakaratne Dilshan's stumps in his next over. Afridi finished with invaluable figures of 2 for 23 in four overs.
Slowdown of the day
Sri Lanka began their innings in highest gear but slowed to their lowest after losing Dilshan. After scoring 80 off the first seven overs, their innings suffered from a boundary drought for 26 balls. Between overs seven and 12, they managed merely 11 runs, and were being choked by spin until Kumar Sangakkara swept Afridi to the square-leg boundary.
Contrast of the day …
… was Angelo Mathews' first over compared to the one bowled by Tanvir. While Tanvir had conceded 18 runs, Mathews gave only one and took a wicket as well. His accurate first ball prompted Salman Butt to shoulder arms, and when the batsman attempted the big drive two deliveries later, Mathews swung the ball between his bat and pad and hit the stumps.
Hat-trick of the day
Mathews had conceded no boundaries and had given only six runs after bowling 2.1 overs. Shoaib Malik decided it was time for him to go and cut Mathews for three consecutive fours between point and third man. Malik had a monopoly on Pakistan's boundaries: he hit all five fours during the Powerplay and no other batsmen hit a four or six during the first ten overs.
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