Chasing down 123 in just 12.3 overs with 10 wickets in hand, England was nonplussed by the Sri Lankan heroics. At Karen Rolton Oval, Adelaide, the two teams faced off against each other in a practice match that ended well before the scheduled time.
Winning the toss and electing to bat first, England was reduced to 122-9 in 20 overs, courtesy Shashikala Siriwardene’s magnificent bowling. Siriwardene with her off spins spun the web to trap the English players picking up 4-22 in her four overs. Amy Jones and Tammy Beaumont were the top scorers with 23 runs apiece. Though some of the other players got off to starts, they failed to capitalize.
At the end of the first innings, England would have felt that they have a chance to make a comeback in the game. However, the Sri Lankans came out strong as they kept the English bowlers at bay. The opening pair of Hasini Perera (29) and skipper Chamari Athapaththu (78) stitched a wonderful partnership of 123 runs in just 12.3 overs to see their team through. Athapaththu was determined to make it big in this match as she failed with the bat in the previous practice match against South Africa. The captain smashed the English bowlers all-round the park, hitting as many as eight boundaries and five massive sixes. England had no answer to her onslaught. Heather Knight, an otherwise proactive captain, could do nothing but react to the situation that her team was put in.
Seeing the Sri Lankan batting, it was as if the two sides played on different pitches. In the first innings, England found it hard to score freely, while in the second innings Sri Lanka felt too comfortable clearing the in-field.
A 10-wicket win over the World number two side will give Sri Lanka loads of confidence going into the World T20.
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