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Kusal Janith stars as Sri Lanka beat Bangladesh

Sri Lanka batsman Kusal Janith Perera hits a six during the Twenty20 International match between Sri Lanka and Bangladesh at The Pallekele International Cricket Stadium in Pallekele yesterday. Picture by Kamal Jayamanne

Kusal Janith Perera’s career best maiden half century powered Sri Lanka’s 17-run win against Bangladesh in their tour ending one off Twenty20 played at Pallekele yesterday.

The 22-year-old aggressive left hander showed great signs for the Lankan limited over top order batting after legendary Sanath Jayasuriya’s era. Perera smashed 64 runs in 44 balls including four sixes over mid-wicket and fine-leg remembering Jayasuriya’s batting style and earned the man-of-the-match award.

Batting first, Kusal Janith Perera and Dilshan Munaweera gave Sri Lanka an aggressive start as the openers scored 25 runs in first two overs. It was Sri Lanka’s highest total after two overs in Twenty20 matches. The home team reached 50 runs in just 29 balls. Perera and debut captian Dinesh Chandimal added 45 runs for the second wicket and Sri Lanka made 100 in 11.5 overs.

Test captain Angelo Mathews and limited over specialist batsman Jeevan Mendis put on the highest partnership for the fifth wicket in the Twenty20 for Sri Lanka. Mendis cracked three crunching sixes and two fours before he was bowled for 37.

Sri Lanka scored 24 runs in the 18th over as Thisara Perera smashed two sixes and two fours off Shahadat Hossain. Thisara was unbeaten on 22 in just seven balls. Angelo Mathews hit undefeated 30 and both batsmen added 32 runs in 2.1 overs.

With Thisara’s powerful strike at the end of the innings, Sri Lanka made 198 runs for the loss of five wickets, equalling the highest total at Pallekele as the Lankans had made 198 for 3 against Australia in 2011. In reply, Banladesh were restricted for 181 for 7. Angelo Mathews removed opener Shamsur Rahman as the right hander was trapped lbw for a duck. Mohommad Ashraful batted with great confident hitting two consecutive fours off Mathews’ third and fourth balls. Ashraful scored 43, the highest individual score for Bangladesh.


Sri Lanka:

K. Perera  c Rahim b Mahmudullah 	64
D. Munaweera b Gazi 			 5
D. Chandimal c Jahurul b Razzak 	 9
L. Thirimanne run out			 5
A. Mathews not out 			30
J. Mendis b Rubel 			37
T. Perera not out 			22
Extras (lb7, w19) 			26
Total (for five wickets; 20 overs) 	198
Fall of wickets: 1-32 (Munaweera), 2-77 (Chandimal), 3-86 (Thirimanne), 
4-100 (K. Perera), 5-166 (Mendis).
Bowling: Shahadat 4-0-54-0 (w1), Rubel 4-0-40-1 (w8), Gazi 4-0-30-1 (w2), 
Razzak 4-0-39-1 (w6), Mahmudullah 4-0-28-1 (w2)

Mohammad Ashraful lbw b T. Perera 	43
Shamsur Rahman lbw b Mathews	 	 0
Jahurul Islam b Mathews 		11
Mushfiqur Rahim c Eranga b Senanayake 	39
Nasir Hossain c A. Perera b T. Perera 	 8
Mohammad Mahmudullah run out 		31
Mominul Haque not out 			26
Sohag Gazi c Mathews b Malinga 		 9
Abdur Razzak not out 			 6
Extras (lb3, w5)			 8
Total (for seven wickets; 20 overs)	181
Fall of wickets: 1-9 (Shamsur), 2-27 (Jahurul), 3-68 (Ashraful), 4-85 (Nasir), 
5-135 (Rahim), 6-137 (Mahmudullah), 7-156 (Gazi).
Bowling: Mathews 4-0-37-2, Eranga 4-0-37-0 (w2), Malinga 4-0-27-1, 
Senanayake 4-0-29-1, T. Perera 2-0-25-2 (w3), Mendis 1-0-6-0, A. Perera 1-0-17-0.


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