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Jaffna Stallions 185 for 8 (Perera 68, de Silva 61) beat Kandy Tuskers 131 (Shinwari 3-17) by 54 runs

How the match played out

Jaffna Stallions lost early wickets. Jaffna Stallions rallied through the middle and late overs, thanks largley to Thisara Perera. Then Jaffna Stallions’ bowlers locked the opposition out. The script for this match was largely the same as for the Stallions’ victory on Monday over Dambulla Viiking. With Colombo Kings having lost earlier in the day, Stallions are now the team to beat in the LPL – the only side that are yet to lose a game after three outings. They’ve not been pushed in any of their matches either. This win over Kandy Tuskers was by a whopping 54 runs.

Thanks to a good Powerplay spell from Munaf Patel, and some decent early overs from Dilruwan Perera and Asela Gunaratne, Tuskers had Stallions pinned early. Their total at the end of the fielding restrictions was 26 for 2 – the lowest in the tournament so far. They would go on to lose Tom Moores in the eighth over, and Shoaib Malik in the tenth, but at no point did they seem flustered. Dhananjaya de Silva kept the frequent fall of wickets from turning into a full-blown collapse by batting cautiously, making only 15 from his first 20 deliveries before gradually raising the tempo to finish on 61 off 38.

Tuskers slumped to 131 all out in the 18th over in response, with Brendan Taylor (46 off 32) and Gunaratne (31 off 24) the only batsmen to make a serious run at the target.

Stars of the day

Perera was the the driving force behind the Stallions’ recovery once again, blasting 68 off 28 balls – an innings that included five sixes and as many fours, helping propel his team to 185 for 8 on a pitch that not many batsmen prospered on. As is often the case for Perera, the confidence from his batting flowed into his bowling, and he picked up 2 for 9 in 2.1 overs. He had also hit 95 not out in Monday’s match against Viiking.

Wanindu Hasaranga was excellent as usual with the ball, taking 2 for 17 from his four overs, his googly wreaking havoc yet again. Usman Shinwari was also outstanding with the ball, however, dismissing both the Tuskers’ dangerous openers – Rahmanullah Gurbaz and Kusal Perera – inside the Powerplay, on his way to figures of 3 for 17 off three overs.

For the Tuskers, Gunaratne was perhaps their best bowler, taking 2 for 20, though his full quota wasn’t used. Kusal Perera’s captaincy continues to be puzzling.

Turning point

De Silva and Perera came together with the score on 49 for 4 in the tenth over, and propelled the Stallions towards their commanding score with perhaps the partnership of the tournament so far. They made 118 runs off 47 balls in each other’s company, and on this pitch, that’s a monumental momentum shift.

The big miss

Not a major miss, because it came towards the end of his innings, but Perera was dropped on 50 off the bowling of Nuwan Pradeep in the 17th over – Naveen-ul-Haq spilling the chance at deep midwicket. Perera would go on to hit two more sixes and a four before getting out.



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Ishant Sharma gets stitches on bowling hand, but ‘expected to recover in time’ for England Tests

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The fast bowler hurt himself while trying to stop a Ross Taylor drive on the last day of the WTC final

Ishant Sharma required multiple stitches on his bowling hand after sustaining an injury on the last day of the World Test Championship final against New Zealand, but the pacer is expected to be fit in time for India’s five-match Test series against England that starts on August 4.

Sharma tried to stop a drive from Ross Taylor in what turned out to be the penultimate over of the final. He left the field with his hand bleeding, having bowled only two balls in his seventh over, with Jasprit Bumrah completing it.

“Ishant has had multiple stitches on his middle and fourth finger in his right hand. However, it is not very serious,” a BCCI official was quoted as saying by PTI. “The stitches will be off in around ten days and with six weeks left for the first Test against England, he is expected to recover in time.”



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Eng vs SL 2021 – Jos Buttler ruled out of Sri Lanka white-ball series with calf injury

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Dawid Malan added to ODI squad after MRI scans reveal small calf tear

Jos Buttler has been ruled out of the rest of England’s white-ball series with Sri Lanka. Buttler sustained a calf tear in Wednesday’s first T20I and will now return home to commence his rehabilitation.

Buttler, England’s vice-captain and wicketkeeper, scored an unbeaten 68 opening the batting in the first T20I. According to the ECB, he “felt tightness and discomfort” at the end of the game and was sent for an MRI scan on Thursday morning, which revealed a small tear. He sat out the second T20I, which England won by five wickets.

England had already suggested they may use the Sri Lanka T20Is to experiment, with Jonny Bairstow moving up to open in Buttler’s absence – although he made a three-ball duck as England initially struggled in their chase of 112. Liam Livingstone, whose unbeaten 29 helped secure victory, regularly opens in T20 cricket and could also deputise.



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ENG vs SL 2nd T20I – Mickey Arthur on England and Sri Lanka

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Sri Lanka’s head coach said he wants the batsmen to be more proactive against a world-class England attack

Mickey Arthur has urged his Sri Lanka side to stay patient after they slipped to a second defeat in as many nights in Cardiff, leaving them on a run of 11 defeats in their last 12 completed T20Is dating back to October 2019.
Opting to bat first in both games after winning the toss, Sri Lanka posted scores of 129 and 111, and while they came much closer to defending their total on Thursday night than in Wednesday’s eight-wicket pasting, they always looked a long way short of a par score, failing to hit a boundary in the powerplay for the first time in their T20I history. Arthur, Sri Lanka’s head coach, stressed at the start of the tour that he wanted to add a level of consistency to selection following a turbulent period of chopping and changing, and that it would be important to “nail down the guys’ roles” in this series.
Dasun Shanaka, with scores of 50 and 8 from No. 7, is their leading run-scorer in the series, with Danushka Gunathilaka and Avishka Fernando – backed as opening options for the long term – both struggling to make an impact at the top of the order. Their lack of attacking intent with the bat came under scrutiny on Thursday, but while Arthur suggested that they could be “more proactive” in future, he said that there had been limited opportunities to score against a “world-class” England side on a slow, two-paced pitch being used for the second night in a row.



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