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Wellalage, Asalanka headline Sri Lanka’s spin ambush

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Rohit Sharma was the pick of India's batters but he too fell to Wellalage (pic Cricbuzz)

On a sluggish surface with sharp turn and variable bounce, Sri Lanka’s spinners led by young Dunith Wellalage made merry to bundle out India for an underwhelming total of 213. The left-arm spinner snared the first five wickets to fall and the part-time spin of Charith Asalanka accounted for four scalps as India’s innings was derailed by the spin choke.

The start was contrastingly different as Rohit Sharma and Shubman Gill had gotten India off to another strong start in the first PowerPlay. In hindsight, Sri Lankan captain Dasun Shanaka possibly erred by bowling just two overs of spin in the first ten overs. The overs from the seamers were wayward and it allowed Rohit in particular to get off to a flier. The Indian captain looked in ominous touch and stroked a typically effortlessly six to bring up 10000 ODI runs, thereby becoming the second fastest to achieve the feat in the format.

At 80/0, it seemed like India were cruising towards posting yet another big score in the tournament. Things changed dramatically on the introduction of Wellalage who exploited the surface from the get-go with his disciplined approach. He stuck to the basics and bowled wicket-to-wicket, leaving the rest to the pitch. And the track did respond as he cleaned up Gill with a ripper in his very first over. Virat Kohli fell shortly, chipping a dolly to short mid-wicket while Rohit was undone by a slider that kept very low. From 80/0, they had fallen to 91/3. It was just the beginning.

KL Rahul looked confident after his comeback century in the previous game and started positively. He was probably the only batter who looked comfortable against Wellalage but the latter had the last laugh, forcing Rahul to gift the simplest of return catches. Ishan Kishan never looked in and had a very scratchy innings in the middle. Seeing the amount of turn on a slowing surface, Shanaka brought on more spin. Dhananjaya de Silva got some overs and Asalanka also was given a chance to roll his arm over.

Wellalage duly completed his fifer by producing a peach to sign off his spell, Hardik Pandya the victim. Asalanka followed up the good work with more disciplined bowling as India kept losing wickets. If not for Axar Patel’s cameo at the end and his 27-run last-wicket stand with Mohammed Siraj, India would have fallen well below the 200-run mark. Asalanka had a chance of picking up the second fifer of the game but he wasn’t given a tenth over. Maheesh Theekshana duly picked up the final wicket to close out the innings. There was a slight rain delay after 47 overs but no overs were lost on resumption.

This is the first instance of India losing all their ten wickets in an ODI to spinners.

Brief scores:
India 213 in 49.1 overs (Rohit Sharma 53; Dunith Wellalage 5-40, Charith Asalanka 4-18) vs Sri Lanka

(Cricbuzz)



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Jake Fraser-McGurk enjoys fine IPL debut as Delhi Capitals down Lucknow Super Giants

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Jake Fraser-McGurk marked his debut with a 35-ball 55 (BCCI)

Jake Fraser-McGurk announced his arrival in the IPL with a 55 off 35 – with 3 fours and 5 sixes – as Delhi Capitals handed Lucknow Super Giants their first defeat in the IPL in a game where the latter posted a 160-plus total. The DC bowlers – led by Kuldeep Yadav – tripped up LSG’s top-order early before Ayush Badoni counter-attacked successfully. LSG’s 167/7 was the highest total for a team after losing their first seven wickets for under 100 in IPL history. But this big effort was for nothing in the end.

Delhi Capitals might be languishing lower in the points table, but Khaleel Ahmed finds himself joint-third on the bowling charts for the season. He was instrumental in setting up the team’s only other win this season – against CSK – and was once again at hand in rocking LSG’s top-order. Khaleel had the rub of the green as the umpire ruled in his favour for an LBW appeal after Quinton de Kock missed a full ball on the leg stump. The left-hander’s stay was cut short by umpire’s call. In his next over, he had Devdutt Padikkal out leg before too.

The match-up worked perfectly for DC as this was the fourth time de Kock fell to a left-arm pacer and third instance for Padikkal.

The left-arm wrist spinner Kuldeep Yadav,  lured Marcus Stoinis into a big, risky heave in his first over. The result was a leading edge to Ishant Sharma at backward point. LSG were left stunned just the next ball when he bowled a fabulous googly to an unsuspecting Nicholas Pooran and knocked back his stumps. KL Rahul, who had shown some intent early on, became Kuldeep’s third wicket in the 10th over. It needed DC to review but Rishabh Pant was convinced of an edge, and was rewarded for it.

LSG regressed further, slipping from 80 for 5 in 10 overs to 94 for 7 in 13 overs.

Ayush Badoni the 24-year-old resurrected LSG’s essay with an unbeaten 55 off 35. He had Arshad Khan for company in an eighth-wicket partnership worth 73 off the last seven overs. Badoni took on DC’s death-overs pacers Mukesh Kumar, Khaleel and Ishant Sharma as 39 runs came off the last three overs. Kuldeep meanwhile finished with figures of 3 for 20, including 10 dot balls.

David Warner’s dismissal in the fourth over did nothing to DC’s run-chase as their 22-year-old Jake Fraser-McGurk marked his IPL debut with an impressive show. He and Prithvi Shaw went on a boundary-hitting spree, collecting 15 off Arshad Khan and 17 off Krunal Pandya to take DC to 62/1 in 6 overs.

Ravi Bishnoi pushed DC back with a one-run seventh over that included the wicket of Shaw – caught at deep midwicket. This brought along a period of lull as DC managed just 13 runs in 4 overs until the halfway stage, without a boundary scored. Rishabh Pant then turned it around by going after Bishnoi in the 11th over, giving him the charge for a straight six and a four. The DC captain also went after Stoinis before Fraser-McGurk dwarfed the equation by hitting three successive sixes off Krunal – over deep midwicket, deep extra cover and long off.

In the space of five deliveries, Naveen Ul-Haq and Bishnoi dismissed both the batters and ended the chase-defining stand of 77 runs. But at this point, DC needed just 20 off 27 balls which Shai Hope and Tristan Stubbs saw through comfortably in 18.1 overs.

Brief Scores:
Lucknow Super Giants 167/7 in 20 overs (Ayush Badoni 55*, KL Rahul 39; Kuldeep Yadav 3-20, Khaleel Ahmed 2-41) lost to  Delhi Capitals 170/4 in 18.1 overs (Jake Fraser-McGurk 55, Rishabh Pant 41; Ravi Bishnoi 2-25) by 6 wickets

(Cricbuzz)

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Navy intercept multi-day fishing trawler carrying 200kg of narcotics

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It has been reported that the Sri Lanka Navy has intercepted a multi-day fishing trawler carrying around 200kg of narcotics suspected to be heroin and crystal methamphetamine (‘Ice’) off the southern coast of the island.

The boat and crew  were to be brought to the Galle Harbour,

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Advisory for Severe Lightning issued to Western, Southern, Sabaragamuwa, Northern and North-western provinces and in Monaragala district today (12)

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Advisory for Severe Lightning issued by the natural hazards early warning center at 01.30 p.m. to 11.30 p.m. on 12 April 2024

Thundershowers accompanied by severe lightning are likely to occur at several places in Western, Southern, Sabaragamuwa, Northern and North-western provinces and in Monaragala district.

There may be temporary localized strong winds during thundershowers.

General public is kindly requested to take adequate precautions to minimize damages caused by lightning activity.

ACTION REQUIRED:

The Department of Meteorology advises that people should:
• Seek shelter, preferably indoors and never under trees.

• Avoid open areas such as paddy fields, tea plantations and open water bodies during thunderstorms.

• Avoid using wired telephones and connected electric appliances during thunderstorms.

• Avoid using open vehicles, such as bicycles, tractors and boats etc.

• Beware of fallen trees and power lines.

• For emergency assistance contact the local disaster management authorities.
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