Sri Lanka vs New Zealand
Sri Lanka won by 59 runs
This match turned most decisively on Rangana Herath's portly, 36 year old frame. Two run-outs also came during his spell, so while Herath was trundling away New Zealand effectively lost seven wickets for three runs. His figures read 3.3-2-3-5. Simply marvelous. The victory means Sri Lanka will play whoever wins in the Pakistan v West Indies match, while South Africa take on India in the other semi-final. After the England v Netherlands game, this has been a truly memorable day for cricket. We hope you've enjoyed our commentary, and do join us again!
Over 15.3 - NZ 60 all out
WICKETS! Sri Lanka win! Fittingly, it's Herath who sees them home. Williamson's scatterbrained run out embodies New Zealand's efforts in this match. Boult chipped the ball into the outfield, but neither batsman could decide whether a second run was on. Thanks to their hesitation, it was not, and after Williamson fell Boult edged Herath to slip to give the left-arm spinner his fifth wicket and end the match. Anderson is not fit to bat, so Sri Lanka go through!
Over 15 - NZ 59/7 (Williamson 42, Boult 2)
Lasith Malinga returns to the attack, and now he is bowling yorkers. But his effort to Williamson goes a little awry and the batsman is able to glance the ball to the fine leg boundary. A single puts Boult on strike, and he manages to get his bat down in time to keep a dipping yorker away from the stumps.
Over 14 - NZ 51/7 (Williamson 36, Boult 0)
WICKET! Senanayake strikes again! Mills departs playing a slightly brainless reverse sweep, but he's actually unlucky to be given out. Replays show that the ball would probably have spun down the leg side, but an extended, emotive lbw appeal convinced Aleem Dar to give the batsman out. There are two slips in place for Trent Boult, but he's able to survive the over. I wonder how Corey Anderson is doing? Has he made it back from the hospital yet? He may well be called upon to bat if he has, injured finger and all ...
Over 13 - NZ 50/6 (Williamson 35, Mills 4)
Sri Lanka's defense is punctured by two boundaries - one each for the batsmen. Williamson has found Mathews' bowling to his liking, and he starts the damage by clubbing a short ball to the square leg boundary. A slightly flaky, bottom-edged single puts Mills on strike, and he aims a booming cover drive through the gap to get off the mark.
Over 12 - NZ 39/6 (Williamson 28, Mills 0)
Senanayake continues, and Williamson sees off the first four deliveries of the offspinners over before nurdling a single to midwicket off the fifth. That puts Mills on strike, and he manages to keep the final delivery out. Sri Lanka still have a slip and a short leg in place, in the 12th over of a Twenty20 match!
Over 11 - NZ 38/6 (Williamson 27, Mills 0)
Just a little bit of relief for New Zealand! Williamson advances at Mathews' medium pace and chips a boundary over mid-on. But New Zealand need 9 an over from here on in, so they need a lot more of that.
Over 10 - NZ 33/6 (Williamson 22, Mills 0)
WICKET! it's not Herath, but spin has accounted for yet another New Zealand batsman. McCullum's tactic had been to shuffle across his stumps and look to work the ball to leg, and he's done just that to offspinner Senanayake - but he's clipped the ball straight into the hands of Mathews at midwicket. Kyle Mills reaches the middle, and does a decent enough job of keeping the final three deliveries of the over out. Williamson remains, but the situation, surely, is now hopeless?
Over 9 - NZ 32/5 (Williamson 21, McCullum 2)
Just the one over from Malinga, who has decided to bring Angelo Mathews back into the attack. After all the excitement, there's a slight lull in this over. Mathews doesn't look like getting past either batsman, and the Blackcaps look to work a couple of singles around.
Over 8 - NZ 30/5 (Williamson 20, McCullum 1)
WICKET! And another one! Rangana Herath has four. This is already one of the great spells in Twenty20 internationals. He's only got two deliveries - the orthodox left-arm spinner and the arm ball, but New Zealand can't tell the difference and their batsmen are being made to look utterly clueless. Ronchi is the next to go, shuffling across his stumps and playing around one that ripped into his back pad. The appeal was immediate, and the umpire had no hesitation in raising the finger.
Over 7 - NZ 28/4 (Williamson 19, Ronchi 2)
Malinga, who is captaining Sri Lanka today, comes on for the first time. The ball is hard and new, and so he looks to hit a length, rather than zing down a yorker. That gives Ronchi and Williamson the chance to angle the ball into the gaps and milk a couple of precious singles.
Over 6 - NZ 23/4 (Williamson 16)
WICKETS! Remarkable scenes. What's going on out there? Rangana Herath, five foot nothing and slightly portly, appears to have utterly psyched New Zealand out. He's bowling with a slip and a short leg in place, and the first batsman he lines up is Ross Taylor. There's an appeal for a catch at short leg, then one for lbw, then another for lbw, and this time it's upheld. Taylor is out for a five-ball duck! Neesham trudges to the middle like a condemned man, and props half forward to his first delivery, with dips and spins between a massive bat-pad gap to set the stumps a-glowing. Remember, New Zealand are effectively 23 for 5 without Anderson!
Over 5 - NZ 23/2 (Williamson 16, Taylor 0)
Suddenly, Kulasekara has the ball hooping in through the air. Williamson is rooted to the crease for the first five deliveries of this over, and it's the bowler who releases the pressure at the end. Kulasekara's final delivery is just a little too short, and Williamson rocks back to lift a pull shot in front of square.
Over 4 - NZ 18/2 (Williamson 12)
WICKETS! Two in the over! Sri Lanka are right back in this. Guptill was the first to go in this over from Herath. The crowd are very noisy, and it's possible that Williamson didn't hear Guptill's call for a single off the first delivery. Williamson was ball-watching, even as Guptill sprinted down the wicket, and by the time he stopped, turned and tried to get back, the ball was already in Sangakkara's gloves. Enter Brendon McCullum. He is, perhaps, a little spooked by one that goes on with the arm and strikes the pad to spark an emotive lbw appeal, and jumps out of his crease at Herath's next delivery ... but this one is tossed up, dips, grips and spins past his outside edge. New Zealand's best batsman is stumped for a duck, and Sri Lanka will believe they can pull this off now.
We've just heard that Corey Anderson - who injured his finger attempting a catch in the outfield earlier - has gone to hospital and will not bat in this innings. That makes the task a little harder for New Zealand, who need to chase this total down with only 10 batsmen.
Over 3 - NZ 18/0 (Williamson 12, Guptill 5)
Yet more fidgety batting from Williamson. It's not easy out there, but he's still looking to have a go at the bowling. Kulasekara continues his opening spell, and after sparring at a few deliveries Williamson flings his bat across the line. Fortunately for him, the ball takes a thick inside edge and rolls down to the fine leg boundary.
Over 2 - NZ 12/0 (Williamson 8, Guptill 4)
Sri Lanka opt for medium pace from both ends, with Angelo Mathews sharing the early duties. Williamson charges him straight away, and is lucky to get away with it as an inside edge bounces past the stumps and is stopped by Sangakkara. The wicketkeeper immediately calls for a helmet and comes up to the stumps, but Mathews ruins what would have been a good over by slipping his final delivery down the leg side. Williamson bends low to flick it out to long leg for four!
Over 1 - NZ 4/0 (Guptill 3, Williamson 1)
Nuwan Kulasekara takes the new ball for Sri Lanka, pumping his knees high as he sprints through his first over and bending his back to extract every bit of life from the pitch. He draws some unconvincing strokes from the batsmen, but there's nothing to really panic Guptill and Williamson just yet.
One foot in the semi-finals?
This looks like an easy task for New Zealand, but these runs would have been enough to beat England on this same ground earlier. Remember, this is effectively a knockout match for these sides: whoever wins goes through. New Zealand have a powerful top order, but Sri Lanka's varied bowling attack must surely believe that they, too, can make the most of these conditions. Stick with us for the chase!
Over 19.2 - SL 119 all out
WICKETS! Neesham finishes things off marvelously for New Zealand with two wickets in two balls. First to go was Senanayake, who looked to leather a full toss outside off stump, but unfortunately sent the ball straight into the hands of Williamson. To be honest, that was an atrocious ball, and even Neesham himself is a little sheepish in his celebration. His next delivery was little better, but it also brought a wicket! The ball curved down the leg side, but Malinga was stepping in that direction, and it ricocheted off his pads and into the stumps. Sri Lanka's innings ends with a whimper.
- 31st Mar 2014
- New Zealand won the toss and elected to bowl.
- Zohur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium
- R J Tucker, A S Dar
- TV Umpire
- B N J Oxenford
- Match Referee
- D C Boon
- Reserve Umpire
- S J Davis
new zealand BATTING CARD
|M.J. Guptill||run out (Herath)||5|
|K.S. Williamson||run out (Mathews)||42|
|B.B. McCullum||s Sangakkara b Herath||0|
|L.R.P.L. Taylor||lbw Herath||0|
|J.D.S. Neesham||b Herath||0|
|L. Ronchi||lbw Herath||2|
|N.L. McCullum||c Mathews b Senanayake||2|
|K.D. Mills||lbw Senanayake||4|
|T.A. Boult||c Jayawardene b Herath||3|
|Total||All Out, 15.3 Overs||60|