Sri Lanka resists Tigers to avoid clean sweep


DHAKA, May 28, 2021 (BSS) – Sri Lanka put up a spirited performance
to resist the ignominious whitewash as they secured a 97-run win over
Bangladesh in the third and final one-day International at
Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium today.

Skipper Kusal Perera and fast bowler Dushmantha Chameera played the
key role in making the scoreline 2-1 when Bangladesh was absolutely
favourite to sweep the three-match series.

While Perera notched up his sixth century, Chameera complemented his
effort, claiming his maiden five-for.

After opting to bat first, Perera led from the front with 122
ball-120 as Sri Lanka compiled a respectable 286-6. Bangladesh whose
highest successful chase against Sri Lanka was 273, needed to rewrite
the record.

But Chameera resisted them, snapping up 5-16 in nine overs, that saw
the home side being all out for 189 in 42.3 overs. This was however
Sri Lanka’s first victory in the ICC ODI Super League.

Kusal Perera was lucky to have survived thrice on 66, 79 and 99,
thanks to Bangladesh’s sloppy fielding. Dhananjaya de Silva made an
unbeaten 55 off 70 while opener Danushka Gunathilaka scored 39 to help
Sri Lanka alongside Perera rally the sidetowards big total in
two-paced wicket.

Sri Lanka made a flying start with Perera and Danushka Gunathilaka
adding 82 runs for the opening stand.

Taskin Ahmed who was the most successful bowler for Bangladesh with
4-46 in in nine over, gave the side some control with a double strike,
removing Gunathilaka for 39 and Pathum Nissanka for 0.

But Perera remained untroubled even though Taskin operated with high
pace and maintained nice line and length.

Perera reached his 50 off 44 balls, driving Taskin to sweeper cover
for single and grew with more confidence.

Kusal Mendis’ calm presence at the other end and the butter-fingered
Bangladesh fielders also helped him to come hard on the bowlers.

Left arm spinner Shakib Al Hasan could have got him twice but
Mustafizur Rahman put down a catch at short third man and later Afif
Hossain shelled a sitter at long on.

However as Perera looked nervy on his 99, Mustafizur got the better
of him but Mahmudullah missed another chance at mid-on.

Perera then clipped Mustafizur through leg side for single to
complete his deserving century off 99 balls.

Taskin meantime claimed the wicket of Mendis for 22, with a slower
delivery, ending a 59-run partnership between him and Perera.

Pacer Shofirul Isalm, who was wayward in his first spell, came back
strongly in his second spell to take the wicket of Perera with a back
of length delivery.

Bangladesh bowlers then regrouped well to stem the run flow as Sri
Lanka appeared to go past 300 runs.

The Bangladeshi bowlers utilized the slower delivery to good effect,
preventing Lankan batsmen to make carnage in the death overs.

But Dhananjaya de Silva earned some boundaries towards the death to
help the side post a good total. He was not out on 55 off 70, hitting
four fours.

Apart from Taskin’s four-for, Shoriful took one for 56.

Sri Lanka took the early edge, thanks to fast bowler Chameera, who
moved the ball admirably to take the wicket of opener Naim Sheikh (1),
coming in place of Liton Das and Shakib Al Hasan (4).

Skipper Tamim Iqbal nicked Chameera’s slower delivery behind the
wicket as Bangladesh was left to a tricky 28-3 in 10th over.

Mushfiqur Rahim who scored 84 and 125 in the last two matches, this
time played rash shot to be out for 28, giving offspinner Romesh
Mendis the debut wicket.

After sharing 56-run with Mushfiqur, Mosaddek Hossain gave
Bangladesh some hope before he was out to reverse-sweep off Mendis. He
made 51 off 72, including four fours and one six.

With 125-5, Bangladesh was all but out of the game.

Mahmudullah still batted to make 53 off 63 with two fours and one
sixes before being out as the last batsman.

Chameera’s five-for was complemented by leg-spinner Wanindu
Hasaranga and offspinner Romesh Mendis’s two wickets.