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    Showing posts with label asia cup 2014. Show all posts

    Asia Cup 2014 : Lakmal strikes, Afghanistan lose Shahzad early in chase of 254

    Chasing a solid 254-run target, Afghanistan got off to bad start as they lost Mohammad Shahzad early in their Asia Cup tie at the Shere Bangla National Stadium in Mirpur.

    Scorecard | Match in Pics

    Pacer Suranga Lakmal gave Sri Lanka the first breakthrough when the breached the defences of Shahzad (7) to get the better of his stumps.

    Earlier, Kumar Sangakkara continued his impressive run of form with a fine half-century before a late flourish powered Sri Lanka to a challenging 253 for six.

    Electing to bat, Sri Lanka wobbled initially as they were reduced to 83 for three in the
    21st century, but recovered to 157 for four in the 37th over courtesy a 74-run stand between wicketkeeper Sangakkara (76) and Dinesh Chandimal (26).
    The Afghan seamers struck back after choking the runs in the middle overs as Sri Lanka were reduced to 184 for six in the 42nd over after being 157 for three in the 37th over, thereby adding just 27 runs at the expense of four wickets in five overs.

    Captain Angelo Mathews then struck a 41-ball unbeaten 45 to take Sri Lanka past 250, their lowest total in the tournament. He shared crucial 69 runs with Thisara Perera (19 not out) for the seventh wicket at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium.

    Afghanistan, who beat Bangladesh in their previous match two days ago in their best-ever result till date, used as many as eight bowlers and were initially able to restrict the Sri Lankan batsmen who have been in fine form in the tournament, having helped their side win both their earlier matches.

    Sangakkara continued with his fine form in the tournament, top-scoring with a 102-ball knock, which was studded with four sixes and one six. He had scored 67 (against Pakistan) and 103 (against India) in Sri Lanka's earlier two games.

    For Afghanistan, Mirwais Ashraf grabbed two wickets for 29 runs while his fellow pacers Shapoor Zadran, Dawlat Zadran and left-arm spinner Hamza Hotak took a wicket apiece. 

    Asia Cup 2014: Virat Kohli will be under pressure as captain, Mahendra Singh Dhoni will be missed, says Sunil Gavaskar

    India's stand-in skipper Virat Kohli will be under pressure to produce good results in the Asia Cup in Bangladesh, according to former captain Sunil Gavaskar. Gavaskar also said senior player and permanent captain MS Dhoni will be sorely missed during the course of the five-nation tournament.

    Dhoni was ruled out of the Asia Cup tournament with a left side-strain injury last week, as the Board of Control for Cricket in India confirmed it in a release, along with naming Dinesh Karthik as his replacement. Kohli was named captain in Dhoni's absence. "Virat (Kohli) will be under pressure. If he produces the results then it is a good start for him," Gavaskar told NDTV in an exclusive chat. (India vs Bangladesh preview)

    Gavaskar also said that even if Kohli did not deliver as Team India captain in Bangladesh, he should not be judged on the basis of just one tournament. "Don't judge Virat by just one tournament. Don't expect tremendous results from him as skipper," said the former Indian captain. (Also read: Virat Kohli ready to test himself as skipper)
    "Captaincy, like anything else, is a role to be settled into. So to expect Virat to produce tremendous results might be going over the top. But if he does produce tremendous results it means that he has begun well. Yes, I think he will be under pressure because he realises that with the recent results that India has had there are a lot of expectations from him. There has been a lot of talk about Dhoni retiring as captain from one format and so maybe that is the reason why maybe Virat will feel a little more of the pressure," he added. (Related: Dhoni not the only casualty as injuries mar Asia Cup)

    While encouraging Kohli as captain, Gavaskar made it clear that India could not do without the services of Dhoni, who is a combination of a great finisher, a great runner between wickets and a top-class keeper. "India is going to miss him massively. Apart from the fact that he just takes the game away from the opposition, it's the running between the wickets that he puts pressure on the opposition. So in all aspects I think he is going to be missed massively as a player in the team. Again as a wicketkeeper, he is top class. Not too many people give him credit for being the kind of wicketkeeper he is. But he is a tremendous cricketer and I just hope that whatever injury he suffered in New Zealand, he gets over that pretty quickly," said Gavaskar.

    The Indian cricket legend also touched upon how the fifth bowler could prove key for the team in sub-continental conditions but said the top-four bowlers should do most of the job. "The fifth bowler will be key. Stuart Binny, Ambati Rayudu will be good options but the first four bowlers will have to do the job for India," Gavaskar added.

    Asia Cup 2014: Skipper Misbah-ul-Haq slams fifty to revive Pakistan chase

    Chasing a 297-run target, Pakistan got off to a bad start as they lost their top order cheaply against Sri Lanka in the first match of the Asia Cup in Fatullah.

    Scorecard | Match in Pics

    Pakistan tried to get its run chase back on track courtesy a steady stand between Ahmed Shehzad and Mohammad Hafeez.

    The Shehzad-Hafeez duo stitched a crucial 49-run partnership for the second wicket soon after losing opener Sharjeel Khan early.

    However, Chaturanga De Silva and skipper Angelo Mathews struck in consecutive overs to send Shehzad (28) and Hafeez (18) back to the pavilion.

    Spinner Sachithra Senanayake then joined the wicket taking party when he scalped Sohaib Maqsood (17) by getting him caught at deep mid-wicket.

    Pakistan lost their first wicket when Suranga Lakmal had Sharjeel (26) caught comfortably at mid-on by Mathews after the Pakistan opener mis-timed a short of length delivery.

    Earlier, opener Lahiru Thirimanne notched up his second ODI hundred to power Sri Lanka to a challenging 296 for six against Pakistan.

    Thirimanne hit 11 fours and a six in his 110-ball 102-run innings and starred in a 161-run stand with Kumar Sangakkara (67) for the second wicket to lay the foundation for a huge score at the Khan Shaheb Osman Ali Stadium.

    Pakistan tried to make a comeback in the middle overs as they picked up a few wickets, before skipper Angelo Matthews provided the late charge, cracking a 50-ball 55, to take Sri Lanka close to the 300-mark.

    For Pakistan, Umar Gul (38) and Shahid Afridi (56) picked up two wickets each, while Saeed Ajmal (1/50) took one.

    Electing to bat, Sri Lanka made a watchful start before opener Kusal Perera (14) edged an Umar Gul delivery straight to Umar Akmal behind the stumps in the eighth over to slip to 28 for one.

    However, Thirimanne continued his good run and notched up his fifty off 56 balls in the 20th over, his first half-century since last July.

    He and first-down batsman Sangakkara ensured Sri Lanka suffer no more damage as the two left-handed batsmen amassed runs at good pace and took Sri Lanka to the 100-mark in the 20th over.

    The duo then changed gears, piling up 68 runs in the next 10 overs. Sangakkara, who has been in red-hot form, brought up his 84th fifty in as many balls in the 27th over when he blasted Mohammad Hafeez for a boundary through the midwicket area.

    In the 31st over, Thirimanne picked up Hafeez for special treatment as he sent him over deep midwicket to bring up the first six of the match and move into the 90s. 

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