Saturday, July 16, 2011

4th ODI: England vs Sri Lanka

I know it was nearly two weeks ago, but I know you'll all appreciate a reminder...

After going 2-1 down at Lord's, England were looking to bounce back. Sri Lanka were looking to win the series. The weather and the pitch at Trent Bridge were looking likely to be favourable to bowling, so it was no surprise that when Alastair Cook won the toss, he decided to bowl first. Because we all know that Jimmy's quite good when it's cloudy. 

Both sides were unchanged. Stuart Broad was playing at his home ground. Could he finally pick up a wicket and stop his average being 'N/A'? Here's the fourth ODI, better late than never... 

Jimmy, like the other matches, takes the opening over and he soon picks up a wicket. 
Dilshan, not having a good return in probably his specialist format since his broken thumb in the Lord's Test, gets a cracking delivery and nicks one behind to Craigy K.
Sri Lanka lose an early wicket again and they are 1-1.
Tim Bresnan decides to get into the action. Jayawardene soon follows Dilshan back to the hutch.
He edges Bressie Lad into the slips...
Where he is caught by Jonny Trotter. Sri Lanka are 10-2 and it's about to get a whole lot worse.
Anderson picks up the centurion of the previous match, Chandimal. 

He crashes one into the pads and Billy Beakdon raises the crooked wing of fate and Sri Lanka are in deep trouble at 11-3. 
It gets worse. Anderson picks up his third and England's fourth by getting Kandamby's edge...
Where the catch is taken by Jimmy's best mate. 

It's up to Sangakkara, who gave a fantastic Spirit of Cricket lecture between the third ODI and this one, to get Sri Lanka out of this tricky spot. He hits a beautiful drive off Bresnan...

Which goes to the boundary for four.
The beleaguered Broad finally picks up his first wicket of the series. He fires a delivery down the leg side and luckily for him, Randiv gets something on it.

The relief on Broad's face is telling and his England team mates duly celebrate. Sri Lanka are 57-5.

Mathews, defensive blocker extraordinaire of the Lord's ODI, decides to prove to England that he can hit the ball. 

He smashes a six. First off Jade Dirtbag...

Then another one off Stuart Broad.

Mathews soon succumbs to the England seamers too. 
He mistimes one, seemingly harmlessly, up in the air...
But Bressie Lad pulls off an absolute stunner. Sri Lanka become 129-6. 
Sangakkara almost gets run out on 49, but he reaches his half century with an edge for four off Bressie Lad.

Sangakkara celebrates his 50, but his team mates continue to crumble around him.
Broad bowls a short ball to Mendis...
Mendis gets an something on it...
And Kieswetter takes the catch. Broad picks up his second wicket and Sri Lanka are 155-7, looking unlikely to reach 200 unless Sangakkara can do something with the tail. 

But the tail don't wish to hang around and support Sangakkara either. Dernbach raps  Kulaseakara on the pads and he's given out for 5. 

Sri Lanka are 163-8. 

They're soon 163-9 as Dirtbag flattens Malinga's middle stump. Malinga goes for a duck. Sangakkara is still going at the other end, but he's running out of partners.
The third Powerplay is taken. Bressie Lad finds Sangakkara's edge...

But it goes to the boundary for a four.

Fittingly, Sangakkara is the last man out. He skews a Dirtbag delivery up in the air...

And is caught by Eoin Morgan. Sri Lanka are all out for 174. Sangakkara goes for 75 and Quackmal is the not out batsman. 

England get off to a pacy start. 

Kieswetter tucks into Malinga and hits him for four.

Cook races to 33 off 21 deliveries. Here he cuts one off Quackmal for four. 

Cook plays a lovely shot off Quackmal, beating the in field...

And the ball races away to the boundary.

Unfortunately for the spectators in Nottingham though, the rain soon begins to fall. England hope that it's only a passing shower whilst Sri Lanka presumably wish for it to be like a monsoon. 

Fortunately for England, it's only a passing shower. But the match is still affected by good old Duckworth and Lewis. England require 171 from 48 overs and the way England are going, they're not even thinking about reaching the 40 over mark. Here, Cook hits a leg glance for four...
And it brings up yet another international 50. 

Sri Lanka bring on Malinga in the hope of a small miracle. 

But Cook hits another four with some superb timing. 

Kieswetter's not hanging about at the other end either.

He smacks a six off Randiv to bring up his 50...

The England openers cause Trent Bridge and England v Sri Lanka records to tumble. 

With few needed and Cook nearing a century, England decide to not be hypocritical and do what Sri Lanka did at Lord's and instead go for the victory first. Cook's scored enough centuries over the past few months, he'll score more again. 

Kieswetter cracks another six, this time off Mendis.

With 8 needed and Cook needing 5 for his ton, Kieswetter decides that he doesn't care and smacks Kulasekara into the stands. 

England need a single and Kieswetter gets one...

Thanks to a Sri Lankan misfield. 

Kieswetter finishes on 72 not out whilst Cook finishes on 95. 

England have levelled the series and all eyes will be on Old Trafford to see who will win between these two sides in transition. A lot depended upon the wicket and the weather. Of course, unless you've been living under a rock, you know what happened as it was a week ago.

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