|England beat Sri Lanka to enter
Twenty20 World Cup final
|15 May 2010, GROS ISLET:
England cruised into the World Twenty20 final
with a seven-wicket thrashing of Sri Lanka at
the Beausejour Stadium on Thursday.
Set just 129 to win, after tight bowling
restricted Sri Lanka -- last year's losing
finalists -- to 128 for six, England finished on
132 for three as they won with four overs to
Kevin Pietersen, on his return to the side after
he attended the birth of his son in London,
finished on 42 not out and ended the match in
style with a six and a four in successive balls
off fast bowler Lasith Malinga.
England, who have never won a major one-day
international tournament, are now through to
their first final since hosting the 2004
They will face the winners of Friday's second
semi-final between defending champions Pakistan
and Australia in Sunday's final at the
Kensington Oval in Barbados.
Only Angelo Mathews, with 58, offered much
resistance against England's bowlers before he
was run out of the penultimate ball.
Sri Lanka's next best score was 16, achieved by
both captain Kumar Sangakkara, who won the toss,
and Chamara Kapugedera.
Paceman Stuart Broad led the attack with two
wickets for 21 runs off his four permitted overs.
Both left-arm quick Ryan Sidebottom and Broad
took a wicket first ball as Sri Lanka collapsed
to 26 for three.
Spinners Graeme Swann and Michael Yardy then
ensured runs remained hard to come by with a
combined eight overs that cost just 41 runs.
At the start of their run chase, England were
confronted by a trio of spinners as Sri Lanka
looked to exploit their supposed vulnerability
against slow bowling on a pitch offering some
But Craig Kieswetter, driving strongly, and
left-hander Michael Lumb settled any lingering
nerves with an opening stand of 68.
However, that partnership should have ended on
40 when Kieswetter cut the ball to backward
point and Lumb set off for a non-existent
Lumb was almost at the other end of the pitch
before he was sent back but Ajantha Mendis
fumbled the return to the bowler's end stumps,
with Lumb yards out, and the chance had gone.
Two balls later Kieswetter struck unorthodox
spinner Mendis straight back over his head for
four and ended the over with another boundary, a
Kieswetter was eventually yorked by Malinga for
39 and Lumb bowled for 33, walking across his
stumps, by seamer Thissara Perera.
But the damage had already been done.
Sri Lanka collapsed to 26 for three against
England seamers Tim Bresnan, Sidebottom and
They were seven for one at the start of the
second over when left-arm quick Sidebottom
removed Jayasuriya for just one after the
veteran fended outside off stump and edged
straight to England captain Paul Collingwood at
New batsman Tillakaratne Dilshan on nine then
miscued a hook off Bresnan and was well caught
by a diving Luke Wright, running in from deep
backward square leg, to leave Sri Lanka 20 for
two at the end of the third over.
Sri Lanka's collapse continued when Broad, as
Sidebottom had done, took a wicket first ball.
Mahela Jayawardene, the tournament's leading
scorer with 302 runs, including a century
against Zimbabwe, fell for just 10 when he edged
a well pitched up ball outside off stump and was
caught by wicketkeeper Kieswetter.
Swann and Yardy kept the pressure on and Sri
Lanka couldn't break free.