Sri Lanka win the Asia Cup. Kulasekara cleans up Ishant with a full and straight delivery that beats the big drive. Mahela pumps his fist and turns to hug Jayasuriya. One by one, they all troop in and get into a huddle. They break away now. Congratulations to the champions. The Indian team stand on the staircase and shake hands with the Sri Lankans.
The target, despite Jayasuriya's whirlwind thrilling ton, was 274. It didn't look too big and shrunk further when Sehwag went berserk at the top. Enter Ajantha Mendis. Finger-flicking good. The Indians were clueless, playing him like he had flicked hand grenades at them. They went down in a heap. Dhoni fought alone but he too fell. Game over. Sri Lankan fans could well chant now, If Murali doesn't get you, Mendis will. It will be a rather interesting series between these two teams next month. Indians would spend lots of time in front of the video to decipher his bowling code. Can they? Time will tell but in the here and now they were unable to crack the mystery.
President Musharraf is down there with both teams. Murali has a long chat with him. Now the president goes over to the Indian camp to shake hands.
Dhoni: Mendis bowled really well. Frankly speaking, none of us picked him. He bowled brilliantly. He was fantastic. It was his day. It's a good learning curve for us as we are playing Sri Lanka next month." On India's poor record in 22 finals." At least we reached those 22 finals! That's some positive to take away from." On Sri Lanka series." It will be a tough one. Not only Mendis but also Murali and the pitches help the spinners. Hopefully it will be a tough and exciting series."
Man of the Match Ajantha Mendis. Mahela joins in to translate for him. "It was a great experience; first big tournament and enjoyed it. I didn't think too much, just wanted to bowl to the field."
Man of the tournament Mendis again. 17 wickets.
Mahela: "We have played in lots of finals. we knew that in a final 270 would be a big score. We were in trouble when Sehwag went about his way. Mendis came in and bowled brilliantly. Every one else chipped in. But I think what turned around things today was Jayasuriya's brilliant innings. He did what he does best. We knew that if we pick up wickets we can control this batting line up. To win the Asia Cup away from home is a monkey back of us. We haven't had a good 2008, so this victory is good for us. We just have to enjoy this moment and re focus on the home series. All the guys are looking forward to it."
That's it from us. Good bye from me, Sriram Veera, and Binoy George, who was the scorer today. Hope you enjoyed our coverage of Asia Cup 2008. Alvida!
outside the off stump, dabbed to third man
full and moving outside off stump, beaten on the drive
Kulasekara to bowl now
leans forward to steer a flighted delivery on the middle and off to point region
driven to long-on for a single
dropped by Murali. The off break on the middle and off, driven to left of Murali who lunges with his hand outstretched but clanged it
goes round the stumps, bowls a doosra that lands outside leg, beats the waft and strikes the pad
fuller, outside off, squeezed to backward point region
lunges forward and is beaten by the big-spinning off break
fuller and outside off, driven to covers
slower, lands outside leg stump, breaks back in, jabbed to short leg
leans forward to jab a skidder to the off side
another off break, turned to midwicket. Ishant reaches the other end and shouts to Ojha, off spin off spin.
the off break this time, turns in to beat the forward prod and probably, was going down leg side
on the middle and leg, defended to the on side
run out chance missed. It was pushed to point and he set off for a run, turned down by Ishant and the throw missed the stumps
fullish, outside the off stump and scoops it to wide mid-off region. It was in the air but landed safely well to the left of Jayasuriya
short in length, quicker, cutting away from Ishant who is squared up and edges it between Sangakkara and a diving Mahela who was standing at a wide slip
slower one outside off stump, Ishant has a big swing but no wood on leather
leans forward to push a full delivery to covers