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Thursday, November 2, 2023

India beat Lanka by 302 runs and enter Semis !

I predicted (more so after India putting up a huge total) – that match would be one sided and India would win by a huge margin – I thought 150 would be huge !  I ws proved wrong as the margin was double !!


To many, it was revenge of what happened at Sharjah on Oct 29, 2000 – finals of   Coca-Cola Champions Trophy.  That day Srilanka aided by a brilliant 189 by Sanath Jayasuriya set a target of 300 and bundled India for paltry 54 – winning by 245 runs.   The line up of Sourav Ganguly, SAchin Tendulkar, Yuvraj Singh, Vinod Kambli, Hemang Badani, Vijay Dahia, Robin Singh, Sunil Joshi, Ajit Agarkar, Zaheer khan & Venkatesh Prasad folded meekly with Chaminda Vaas taking 5/14.   

Not many would remember the first ignominy on that 9th match at Manchester on June 16-18 1979 (yes you are reading it right – the match started on 16th and ended on 18th)  1979, Prudential World Cup - Frederick Ranjan Manilal de Silva Gunatilleke; Ranjan Senerath Madugalle made their debut – for the former, it was to be his only match !! 

Today at Wankhede with 7/7 India has qualified for the semi finals of ICC World Cup 2023 with a clinical methodical win.   Shreyas Iyer with so many chances succeeded; KL Rahul too shone with correctly calling DRS ! but the Coach Rahul Dravid  would never be able to explain why he opted for Shardul Thakur in place of Mohammad Shami in the earlier matches.  This WC – Virat Kohli and Shami are on fire !!     

When Madhushanka who had earlier taken 5 wickets at a cost of 80  went for an agricultural have and clouded it to mid on – the pain was all over for the Lankans – a big defeat by a margin of 302 runs !!   The Score card reads :  India 357 for 8 (Gill 92, Kohli 88, Shreyas 82, Madushanka 5-80) beat Sri Lanka 55 (Shami 5-18, Siraj 3-16) by 302 runs.  Target of 358 looked very imposing, Mohammed Siraj, Mohammed Shami and Jasprit Bumrah razed Sri Lanka for 55 at the Wankhede, sealing India's seventh successive win of the World Cup and their spot in the semi-finals.  Shami’s analysis is 5-1-18-5   

India's fast-bowling trio was so sensational with the new ball that the scores of Sri Lanka's top five read like a line of binary code: 0,0,1,0,1. When Shami also had Nos. 7 and 8 for ducks with the score on 29, Sri Lanka were in serious danger of folding for the lowest total in ODI cricket. They were eventually dismissed in 19.4 overs as India completed the fourth-biggest win in the format.  

Back to that fateful June 1979 – India had a poor WC 1975 winning only against East Africa – then in 1979 – India lost to West Indies and then to New Zealand – then to Srilanka too.  Srilanka made 238/5 in their 60 overs.  India could make only 191 – losing to minnows by 47 runs.  It was the only win by an associate member of the ICC in the competition and was richly deserved.   Sri Lanka  was without their captain, Anura Tenekoon, who damaged a hamstring the previous day at practice. Pasqual, a confident left-handed schoolboy and the youngest player in the 1979 World Cup, joined in the fun with Mendis as 52 runs were added off seven overs.  

After that ignominious 36 not out off 174 deliveries with a solitary boundary at a strike rate of 20.68 in the inaugural WC, Sunil Gavaskar made 26 off 54 balls getting out to Bandula Warnapura.
With regards – S. Sampathkumar

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