West Indies rode on a dominating all round performance to beat Sri Lanka by 8 wickets in the first One Day International (ODI) in Antigua on Wednesday 10th March 2021. The home team led Sri Lanka out for 232 inside the 49th over to take a 1 – 0 lead in the three match series.
Sri Lanka openers Danushka Gunathilaka (55) and Dimuth Karunaratne (52) put on 105 for the first wicket in 19.2 overs before Karunaratne was first out caught and bowl Kieron Pollard; soon it was 2 for 112 when Gunathilaka was given out by the on field umpire for obstructing the Field.
What occurred: Pollard bowled a short ball which Gunathilaka fended away. Pathum Nissanka set off for a single but Gunathilaka, after advancing down the pitch, sent him back and stepped back into his own crease. As he did so, he stepped on the ball which knocked it backwards.
Pollard immediately appealed and the on-field umpire, Joel Wilson gave a soft signal of out before television umpire Nigel Guguid ruled that Gunathilaka had deliberately attempted to foil the run out. There seemed to be little evidence the batsman had acted deliberately.
Law 37.1 (Out) Obstructing the field: Either batsman is out obstructing the field if, except in the circumstances of 37.2, and while the ball is in play, he/she willfully attempts to obstruct or distract the fielding side by word or action.
The experienced Angelo Mathews did not last too long as he was the third batsman out with the score on 119 in 23.3 overs, he went via the run out route for 5. There was more drama for the Sri Lankans when Pathum Nissanka was run out for 8, 4 for 126.
At that point, the Windies appeared to be back in business, but not before Ashen Bandara scored 50 from 60 deliveries with 4 spanking boundaries before he was the 9th batsman out caught Akeal Hosein off the bowling of Jason Holder with the score on 9 for 224. Other contributions with the bat came from Lakshan Sandakan 16 and Dinesh Chandimal 12.
Bowling for the West Indies, Kieron Pollard picked up 2 for 15; Jason Holder 2 for 39; Akeal Hosein 2 for 44 and Alzarri Joseph 2 for 49.
Needing 233 for victory, the West Indies opening pair of Shai Hope (110 from 133 balls with 12 fours and 1 six) and Evin Lewis (65 from 90 deliveries which included four boundaries and 2 towering sixes), powered their way to a 143 runs first wicket partnership in 28.2 overs.
Lewis was first to go, bowled by Dushumantha Chameera for 65, from a yorker that was perfectly pitched. Hope was joined by Darren Bravo. The pair added 72 before Hope was the next man out, bowled by Chameera for 110, with the score on 215 in 46.2 overs, a delivery that deviated away off the surface to beat the shot.
Darren Bravo and Jason Mohammed remained on 37 and 13 not our respectively.
Bowling for Sri Lanka, Dushumantha Chameera picked up both wickets for 50 runs in 10 overs.
The two teams will clash tomorrow from 9.30 a.m. in the final ODI at the Sir Vivian Richards Cricket Stadium (SVRCS).
The second match in the ODI series was played yesterday and was still in progressed at press time. Details of that match and tomorrow’s could be read in Wednesday edition of this newspaper.
The West Indies 13 man squad reads: Kieron Pollard (captain); Shai Hope (vice captain); Evin Lewis; Fabian Allen; Kyle Mayers, Jason Mohammed, Darren Bravo; Nicholas Pooran; Jason Holder; Alzarri Joseph, Romario Shepherd, Kevin Sinclair and Akeal Hosein.
Sri Lanka will select their playing eleven from: Dimuth Karunaratne (captain); Pathum Nissanka, Dasun Shanaka, Angelo Mathews, Danushka Gunathilaka, Ashen Bandara, Oshada Fernando, Dinesh Chandima, Niroshan Dickwella, Thisara Perera, Kamindu Mendis, Wanindu Hasaranga, Ramesh Mendis, Nuwan Pradeep, Asitha Fernando, Dushmantha Chameera, Lakshan Sandakan, Dilshan Madushanka and Suranga Lakmal and Akila Dananajaya.
Following tomorrow’s ODI, the two teams will meet again in a two Tests series which bowl off at the Sir Vivian Richards Cricket Stadium on Sunday 21st – 25th March, and Monday 29th March to Friday 2nd April.