Champions Trophy 2013 Semi Finals: India vs Sri Lanka- Same Cast, Different Venue but the Same Result
Once Sri Lanka beat Australia in their Final Group Game in Cardiff on Monday, the stage was set for yet another India vs Sri Lanka clash. This time, the two Asian giants battle it out for a place in the final. After settling their scores in the Sub-Continent, the Indo-Lanka battle caravan moved to the British Kingdom. The second semi finals took place on Cardiff yesterday(20th June 2013) to decide the team that will get the bragging rights to meet England in Edgbaston on Sunday(23rd June 2013).
Before the start of the match, the fans were puzzled by various scenarios of the result in case of rain. There were several doubts in their mind beginning from the dilemma whether the weather will permit to get 20 overs from either side to the targets that will be determined by the arguable D/L method. The Indian fans were happy because of the fact that India will get through on the virtue of topping Group B in case the match being called off. But to everyone’s surprise, the rain gods showed mercy as the World witnessed a full game. Even then the Indian Fans were happy as India Defeated Sri Lanka by 8 Wickets with 15 overs to spare. Sri Lanka, the Unsung Chokers lost to India once again going by the script that was on the cards courtesy India’s performance in the Champions Trophy 2013.
The way both the teams played seemed to be completely contrasting. Sri Lankan batting under pressure was exploited as if they were facing Dale Steyn and co in a over cast conditions that suits fast bowlers. On the other hand, Indians chased down the target of 182 with ease as if they were batting on a flat Chinnaswamy stadium wicket in Bangalore that has nothing for the bowlers. At the end of the day, it was the outcome of the match that makes the difference between the two teams. The final verdict is Sri Lanka were beaten Fair and Square by India and were knocked out of the Champions Trophy 2013.
Sri Lanka: 181-8 in 50 overs( Angelo Matthews-51, Jayawardene-38, Ishant Sharma-3/33)
India: 182-2 in 35 overs( Dhawan-68, Virat Kohli-58*, Rohit Sharma-33)
Result: India won by 8 wickets with 90 balls remaining.
Man of the Match: Ishant Sharma for his spell of 3/33.
From the moment MS Dhoni won the Toss and chose to bowl first till Raina guided the ball towards the Fine-Leg for the winning runs, it was a one-way traffic and Sri Lanka were struck in it. Lets take a look at the Moments where India won the match.
Where India won the Match?
With the Wicket kept covered before the start of play and overcast conditions around the Sophia Gardens, the toss seamed Crucial for both the teams. The Captain winning the toss was expected to Field first in the conditions that suits his bowlers. MS Dhoni did the same and applied pressure on the experienced Sri Lankan batting before the match started.
Dilshan forced to Retire Hurt:
With Kusal Perera getting out cheaply once again, the onus was on Dilshan to provide a decent start for the Lankans and he seemed to be in good touch. Unfortunately after hurting his calf muscle Dilshan was struggling to run between the wickets. With the ICC banning the use of runners, it was all but over for for Dilshan as he left the field soon and came back after the fall of Kulasekara in the 48th over. As Dhoni said in the post-match presentation, his absence proved costly for Sri Lanka.
Economical Spell by Indian Seamers:
The first 22 overs bowled by the Indian seamers yielded just 58 runs with 3 Wickets in their bag. The Pacers used the conditions well and exploited SL’s batting Line Up. Bhuvaneshwar Kumar was exceptional with the new ball with a spell of 9-2-18-1. He was well backed by Umesh Yadav and Ishant Sharma in the initial overs. Yadav’s spell read 7-2-22-0 and Ishant was more impressive with returns of 6-1-18-2. They were well supported by their Fielders especially Raina who took 3 catches at second slip to dismiss the 3 Lankan batsmen. Ishant dictated the terms with the wickets of well set Thirimanne and Sangakkara.
Sri Lanka’s Batting Power-Play:
Sri Lanka were forced to take the batting Power-Play in the 36th over just to see their star Batsman Mahela Jayawardane walking back to the pavilion soon after. Indian Spin Twins Jadeja and Ashwin applied brakes on the Run Rate and gave away just 13 runs in the 5 Overs.
Decent death bowling by India:
Like the Power-Play overs, the Death bowling was also economical. India’s familiar foe in the ODI’s ie. the last 5 Overs yielded just 27 runs 4 Lankans back to the Pavilion that included the important wicket of well set Angelo Matthews. Sri Lanka’s batsmen had no option but to be patient, and couldn’t really force the pace later in the innings. But Ashwin and Ishant denied the flow of runs in the later stages.
Solid Opening at the top by the Indian Openers:
As expected the Indian openers began on a cautious note seeing off the early threats posed by the swinging New Ball. Once again, Dhawan and Rohit Sharma put on a 50 run partnership, their 4th in 4 matches in Champions Trophy 2013. With Sharma looked good for a big score, he got out for a needless shot that ended the 77 run partnership. Dhawan went on to score yet another 50 and eventually got out for 68 with India needing 40 runs to win with 8 wickets in hand.
Virat Kohli’s Innings:
Finally Virat Kohli got a chance in the Champions Trophy 2013. Kohli has the knack of demolishing the Sri Lankan bowling line up time and time again, a lot was expected from him in the match. He utilised the opportunity and went on to score a brisk 58 to guide India home. Once again Kohli made Malinga his bunny by scoring 22 of 19 balls.
With India humbling Sri Lanka, Edgbaston is ready for the Final showdown. Now its official: INDIA vs ENGLAND, ICC Champions Trophy 2013 Finals, Edgbaston on 23rd June 2013 at 10:30 local and 15:00 IST.