In my preview of the first semi-final I had stuck my neck out to predict a win for the team batting first. On the day, Sri Lanka lost little time in metaphorically decapitating my proferred head.
In T20 cricket, we have seen batsmen thrive on wickets offering no perceptible help to bowlers, especially if there was good “carry”. Replace such wickets with a spongy one, and have your pace bowlers reduce their delivery speed by about 20 kmph, and what have you got? Answer: a scoreboard that reads 26 for 3, after a very few overs…
That was Sri Lanka’s story in an anti-climactic semi-final. Lanka were helped in their cause by having a shuffling Jayasuriya open their innings, or by soft dismissals up the order, such as Dilshan’s. England were helped in theirs, by a clever bowling strategy, backed by great fielding.
Could Lanka have salvaged the situation? Perhaps, Mathew and Kapudegera could have started the slog overs, a bit earlier. This suggestion, though, overlooks two obvious dangers. First, you need to take into account some skilful bowling by Swann, supported by Yardy. Also, with 4 of your main batsmen gone, you need to consolidate first, for fear of getting bowled out. Which is what Lanka did, but it wasn’t good enough. Let’s hope the second semi-final is not as one-sided. Optimism isn’t dead, yet.
About the Author (Author Profile)
Jinxatious is the Chief Editor of SportingAttitude.com
An avid writer, on an eclectic range of subjects, he brings to bear editorial experience garnered with a national newspaper in South-East Asia. He also has sportscasting experience, as a cricket commentator, and his passion for sport extends beyond Cricket, to Football, Tennis, and Olympic Sports.