8th Match, First Round Group A (N), Abu Dhabi, Oct 20 2021, ICC Men's T20 World Cup
(18.3/20 ov, target 172)101
Sri Lanka won by 70 runs
Player Of The Match
71 (47) & 1/12

9.51pm And on that note, it's goodbye from us. Stay tuned for post-match reaction, and keep your ear cocked for the climax of this preliminary stage. It's getting hot at the top!

Andrew Balbirnie: "Started the week well with a good performance against the Dutch... if we'd lost that game we'd have been playing catch up, but a big game on Friday now, all to play for. Josh Little is a real find for us, had them in trouble, but they took it away from us in the middle though we clawed it back well. He has new ball skills to attack the stumps, hopefully he can continue that on Friday and into next week. Those are the games you want to play, the big knock-outs. It's a big deal for us as players, and for friends and families. Hopefully a lot of people tune in."

Dasun Shanaka "Of course it was a concern at 8 for 3, but they put on an awesome partnership. Hasaranga at 5 is a plan coming in at the World Cup and it worked well for us. Great luxury to have fast bowlers in the side, great credit goes to both of them and the coaches for the efforts in the nets. Have to look at top-order batting, but other areas are okay, though fielding has been poor as well."

Arjun V Ajith: "This win and massive run rate is probably going to hurt Srilanka. They are leading to Group 1 where they need to face Aus, Eng, WI, SA and most probably Bangladesh. " I reckon they'll just be glad to be involved after their struggles in recent times.

Nisala: "The world no.2 bowler saying he is a batsman who can ball. Wow! Wownidu!"

Wanindu Hasaranga is Player of the Match: "When I went in I was under pressure, but I rotated the first few balls, then I accelerated. I am a batting allrounder. Tired, with this heat." And in Sinhalese, he thanks the supporters as Sri Lanka book their place in the main draw.

CricDude: "SL is definitely a top 5 team in this tournament, mainly coz of its bowling attack. Batting is getting better. Surely the top order can't fail N number of times." To be fair, a number of teams in the main draw have good attacks. They need a total to defend to have success.

9.33pm And with that, Sri Lanka march into the main draw, with a very impressive victory. They had to recover from an abject 8 for 3, but did so in superb fashion through a brace of fifties from Hasaranga and Nissanka, before a dominant display with the ball. Despite some resistance from Balbirnie, Ireland's last six wickets tumbled for 16 in 5.5 overs...

Chamara Silva: "This win for SL means they are into the next stage and Netherlands is out of the tournament right?" It does indeed, because it's a straight knock-out between Ireland and Namibia now. Those two teams will finish with two and one wins each.

C Karunaratne to Little, OUT

turns inside out for a flick to leg, and misses! Back goes the middle stump, and that is a thumping win

Josh Little b Karunaratne 1 (7m 3b 0x4 0x6) SR: 33.33
C Karunaratne to Simi Singh, 1 run

a skip to the pitch and a languid drive into the covers

C Karunaratne to Simi Singh, no run

leg-sided, flicks the pad to spare the wide

end of over 182 runs • 1 wicket
IRE: 100/9CRR: 5.55 RRR: 36.00 • Need 72 runs from 12b
Josh Little1 (2)
Simi Singh4 (7)
Dushmantha Chameera 3-0-16-1
Wanindu Hasaranga de Silva 4-0-12-1

Sazid: "Meanwhile, Rassie's giving a heavy knock against PAK..." Gosh... never knew he had it in him...

Chameera to Little, no run

another whoosh of a drive outside off, no contact

Abizer Zohair: "Sri Lanka's Bowling was always good, now the battings turning up too. Exciting times!!" Quite a different vibe from their sorry series in England this summer. Then again, their bowling was fine on that trip. The batting, less so

Chameera to Simi Singh, 1 run

short, clawed to the on-side, hitting down on the pull

Chameera to Simi Singh, no run

another massive biff, inside-edged into the pads, winding up on the full length, to little avail

Chameera to Simi Singh, no run

swished to the leg side, inside-edge of the bat on a futile hack

Chameera to Little, 1 run

full length, another attempted yorker, leg-sided this time

Chameera to Young, OUT

yorker, clean through him! Outstanding bowling, wicket-to-wicket, sharp pace, full length, right in the blockhole and Young has no answer. The writing is on the wall now, and even the po-faced Lion on Sri Lanka's shirt is starting to look cheerful

Craig Young b Chameera 1 (8m 6b 0x4 0x6) SR: 16.66
end of over 172 runs
IRE: 98/8CRR: 5.76 RRR: 24.66 • Need 74 runs from 18b
Simi Singh3 (4)
Craig Young1 (5)
Wanindu Hasaranga de Silva 4-0-12-1
Lahiru Kumara 4-0-22-2
Hasaranga de Silva to Simi Singh, no run

crunched back through the line, a sharp one-handed intercept to see off another tidy over, another tidy spell

Hasaranga de Silva to Young, 1 run

slapped from a full length, out to the leg side

Hasaranga de Silva to Young, no run

slower through the air, gripping back into the right-hander, worked to point

Hasaranga de Silva to Young, no run

tossed up outside off, a flashy slog sweep, misses, off come the bails again ... the umpire's having a look. No edge involved, and the toe is grounded this time

Hasaranga de Silva to Young, no run

full length, can't connect on a hack to the leg side

Hasaranga de Silva to Simi Singh, 1 run

flicked off the toes to the leg side

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