Sri Lanka spinner Akila Dananjaya recovered from Wednesday’s shellacking to take one wicket for 13 runs from his four overs today, as the tourists enjoyed the first success of their Caribbean tour with a 43 run win over West Indies in the second CG Insurance T20 International affair at the Coolidge Cricket Ground in Antigua.
Wanindu Hasaranga was the player of the match with three for 17, as the Sri Lanka spinners got their own back to tie the three match series 1-1. The decider is scheduled for Sunday evening at the same venue.
Sri Lanka won the toss today and chose to bat first, which meant that West Indies were asked to chase for successive outings. However, while the visitors managed just 131 for 9 on Wednesday, they put a more competitive target of 160 on the board for the loss of six wickets.
The opening pair of Danushka Gunathilaka (56) and Pathum Nissanka (37) were key to Sri Lanka’s batting effort as the pair put on 95 runs for the first wicket within 10.2 overs.
Dwayne Bravo took two for 24 from his four overs while Jason Holder (one for 36) and Obed McCoy (one for 34) chipped in.
The West Indies batsmen had more work to do on this occasion. And they never really got going. Lendl Simmons (21) and veteran Chris Gayle (16) put on a 36 run partnership for the second wicket, which turned out to be the most productive partnership for the hosts.
And the fact that McCoy, batting at 10, was the West Indies’ top scorer with 23 from seven balls told its own story.
Pollard, the hero in midweek after a remarkable six sixes in one over off Dananjaya, managed just 13 from 15 balls before being caught off the bowling of a third Sri Lankan spinner: Lakshan Sandakan.
And 22-year-old Hasaranga was adjudged the most influential man on the pitch today.
“The wicket was a bit slow,” said Hasaranga. “I tried not to give any boundaries; that’s why I was able to bowl well… I just concentrate on line-and-length.”
Pollard and his men will get another chance to respond on Sunday.