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Sangakkara, Murali steal show

By The Assam Tribune

MUMBAI, March 18 (PTI): Skipper Kumar Sangakkara struck his maiden World Cup century before wily Muttiah Muralitharan weaved his spin magic to propel Sri Lanka to a thumping 112-run victory over New Zealand in their concluding Group A match of the mega-event here today.

Sangakkara stroked his way to 111 in 128 balls, studded with two sixes and 11 fours, and also forged an invaluable 145 runs for the third wicket with his predecessor Mahela Jayawardene (66) that helped Lanka amass 265 for nine after opting to bat at the Wankhede Stadium.

New Zealand, who had qualified for the knockout stage along with Sri Lanka, started in a whirlwind fashion but lot their openers cheaply before Muralitharan, Ajantha Mendis and Tillakaratne Dilshan strangled them with spin.

The Kiwis found the going tough while chasing under lights and were folded up for 153 in 35 overs, losing their last eight wickets for just 71 runs. It was Sri Lanka�s fourth straight win over New Zealand in head-to-head World Cup battles.

Muralitharan, who has announced his retirement at the end of the tournament, grabbed four wickets for 25. He got good support from Mendis (2 for 24) and Dilshan (1 for 24).

Among the Kiwi batsmen, stand-in skipper Ross Taylor emerged as the top scorer with 33 in 54 balls, with one six and three fours, before he became one of Muralitharan�s victims. The next best scorers were James Franklin and Jacob Oram, 20 each, with the latter remaining unbeaten.

With this win Sri Lanka also shot to the top of the Group A. They finished the league stages with nine points but have a superior net run-rate than Australia, who also have nine points with a match in hand against Pakistan tomorrow at Colombo.

But irrespective of the result of the last league clash between Australia and Pakistan, who are tied with New Zealand at eight points apiece, Sri Lanka would finish in second spot and would meet the team that finishes third in Group B in the quarterfinals.

New Zealand stood third at the end of the match but await the result of the Australia-Pakistan clash to know where they finish in the league table.

The Kiwis� run-chase got off to a none-too-impressive beginning as both their openers were back inside the first eight overs.

SCORECARD

SRI LANKA

Tharanga run out 3

Dilshan c Oram b Southee 3

Sangakkara b N McCullum 111

Jayawardene lbw b Southee 66

Mathews not out 41

Samaraweera c B McCullum b Styris 5

Silva c and b N McCullum 3

Kulasekara c Guptill b Southee 1

Malinga c B McCullum b Oram 6

Muralitharan run out 7

Mendis not out 0

Extras: (LB-4, W-12, NB-3) 19

Total: (for nine wickets in 50 overs) 265

Fall of wickets: 1-13, 2-19, 3-164, 4-210, 5-219, 6-224, 7-232, 8-239, 9-260.

Bowling: Southee 10-0-63-3, Oram 10-1-57-1, Bennett 4.1-0-16-0, Ryder 3.5-0-18-0, Franklin 3-0-11-0, Styris 8-0-44-1, N McCullum 10-0-48-2, Williamson 1-0-4-0.

NEW ZEALAND

Guptill lbw b Kulasekara 13

B McCullum c Jayawardene b Mathews 14

Ryder c Sangakkara b Mendis 19

Taylor lbw b Muralitharan 33

K Williamson st Sangakkara b Murali 5

Styris c & b Muralitharan 6

Franklin c Dilshan b Muralitharan 20

N McCullum c Jayawardene b Dilshan 4

Oram not out 20

Southee lbw b Mendis 8

Bennett b Malinga 0

Extras: (LB-4, W-6, NB-1) 11

Total: (all out in 35 overs) 153

Fall of wickets: 1-29, 2-33, 3-82, 4-88, 5-93, 6-102, 7-115, 8-129, 9-144, 10-153.

Bowling: Malinga 5-0-38-1, Kulasekara 7-0-19-1, Mathews 3-0-19-1, Mendis 6-0-24-2, Dilshan 6-0-24-1, Muralitharan 8-0-25-4.

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Sangakkara, Murali steal show

MUMBAI, March 18 (PTI): Skipper Kumar Sangakkara struck his maiden World Cup century before wily Muttiah Muralitharan weaved his spin magic to propel Sri Lanka to a thumping 112-run victory over New Zealand in their concluding Group A match of the mega-event here today.

Sangakkara stroked his way to 111 in 128 balls, studded with two sixes and 11 fours, and also forged an invaluable 145 runs for the third wicket with his predecessor Mahela Jayawardene (66) that helped Lanka amass 265 for nine after opting to bat at the Wankhede Stadium.

New Zealand, who had qualified for the knockout stage along with Sri Lanka, started in a whirlwind fashion but lot their openers cheaply before Muralitharan, Ajantha Mendis and Tillakaratne Dilshan strangled them with spin.

The Kiwis found the going tough while chasing under lights and were folded up for 153 in 35 overs, losing their last eight wickets for just 71 runs. It was Sri Lanka�s fourth straight win over New Zealand in head-to-head World Cup battles.

Muralitharan, who has announced his retirement at the end of the tournament, grabbed four wickets for 25. He got good support from Mendis (2 for 24) and Dilshan (1 for 24).

Among the Kiwi batsmen, stand-in skipper Ross Taylor emerged as the top scorer with 33 in 54 balls, with one six and three fours, before he became one of Muralitharan�s victims. The next best scorers were James Franklin and Jacob Oram, 20 each, with the latter remaining unbeaten.

With this win Sri Lanka also shot to the top of the Group A. They finished the league stages with nine points but have a superior net run-rate than Australia, who also have nine points with a match in hand against Pakistan tomorrow at Colombo.

But irrespective of the result of the last league clash between Australia and Pakistan, who are tied with New Zealand at eight points apiece, Sri Lanka would finish in second spot and would meet the team that finishes third in Group B in the quarterfinals.

New Zealand stood third at the end of the match but await the result of the Australia-Pakistan clash to know where they finish in the league table.

The Kiwis� run-chase got off to a none-too-impressive beginning as both their openers were back inside the first eight overs.

SCORECARD

SRI LANKA

Tharanga run out 3

Dilshan c Oram b Southee 3

Sangakkara b N McCullum 111

Jayawardene lbw b Southee 66

Mathews not out 41

Samaraweera c B McCullum b Styris 5

Silva c and b N McCullum 3

Kulasekara c Guptill b Southee 1

Malinga c B McCullum b Oram 6

Muralitharan run out 7

Mendis not out 0

Extras: (LB-4, W-12, NB-3) 19

Total: (for nine wickets in 50 overs) 265

Fall of wickets: 1-13, 2-19, 3-164, 4-210, 5-219, 6-224, 7-232, 8-239, 9-260.

Bowling: Southee 10-0-63-3, Oram 10-1-57-1, Bennett 4.1-0-16-0, Ryder 3.5-0-18-0, Franklin 3-0-11-0, Styris 8-0-44-1, N McCullum 10-0-48-2, Williamson 1-0-4-0.

NEW ZEALAND

Guptill lbw b Kulasekara 13

B McCullum c Jayawardene b Mathews 14

Ryder c Sangakkara b Mendis 19

Taylor lbw b Muralitharan 33

K Williamson st Sangakkara b Murali 5

Styris c & b Muralitharan 6

Franklin c Dilshan b Muralitharan 20

N McCullum c Jayawardene b Dilshan 4

Oram not out 20

Southee lbw b Mendis 8

Bennett b Malinga 0

Extras: (LB-4, W-6, NB-1) 11

Total: (all out in 35 overs) 153

Fall of wickets: 1-29, 2-33, 3-82, 4-88, 5-93, 6-102, 7-115, 8-129, 9-144, 10-153.

Bowling: Malinga 5-0-38-1, Kulasekara 7-0-19-1, Mathews 3-0-19-1, Mendis 6-0-24-2, Dilshan 6-0-24-1, Muralitharan 8-0-25-4.

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