VICTORIA: Sri Lanka beat UAE in a must win encounter by 79 runs to grab 2 points however the win by such a huge margin was still not sufficient for Sri Lanka to hold a place in the top two. Sri Lanka are currently placed in the third position with a Net Run Rate of 0.6 with Netherland and Namibia holding first and second position respectively.
Sri Lanka under pressure to win with a huge margin to improve the net run rate batted first and set a target of 152 runs for 8 wickets. Pathum Nissanka was the only batsman who looked confident and played a brave innings of 74 runs off 60 balls. Nissanka stood at the non-strikers and watched his fellow colleagues Bhanuka, Asalanka and skipper Shanaka fall for a golden over by UAE’s Meiyappan where he picked up the first hattrick of this years T20 World Cup. Sri Lanka at one point was at 92 for 2 wickets but UAE bowlers did well to restrict Sri Lanka to 152 runs for 8 wickets off the 20 overs.
UAE’s chase never got underway proper with regular wickets falling and was bundled off for 73 runs. Hasaranga starred with 3 wickets for 8 runs while Chameera picked up 3 wickets for 15 runs. UAE was at one point 56 for 9 wickets but a last-minute flair by Junaid Siddeque (18 runs) delayed the Sri Lankan win. Sri Lanka won by 79 runs in the 18th over.
Earlier today, Netherland beat Namibia by 5 wickets and now leads the Group A with 4 points and a positive run rate of 0.149. Namibia batting first hit 121 for 6 wickets off 20 overs. Netherlands reached the target in the last over for loss of 5 wickets. Dutch Bas de Leede contributed with the bat (30 runs) and ball (2 for 18 runs) to win the Player of the Match. This win by Netherlands issued an early exit warning to Sri Lanka much to the disappointment of the Sri Lankan fans and Sri Lanka now must beat Netherland on Thursday to qualify for the Super 12 round.
Scotland will play against Ireland at 9.30 am while West Indies will play the Zimbabwe tomorrow in the second round of matches in Group B at 1.30 pm. Sri Lanka will play Netherlands on Thursday for their final match in the qualifying round (RZ).