In a highly-important ICC CWC Super League encounter, Sri Lanka faced off against New Zealand at Eden Park, Auckland earlier today. The Kiwis were put into bat and they managed to score 274 in 49.3 overs in the first ODI of the three-match series. In the run chase, the Lankans got bowled out for a paltry 76 inside twenty overs to hand the Black Caps a massive 198-run victory.
During the Sri Lanka batting innings, a bizarre incident involving the zing bails happened at the non-striker’s end. On the fourth ball of the 17th over, Chamika Karunaratne clipped Blair Tickner’s delivery wide of the mid-on fielder and while taking the second run, he had a mix-up with Lahiru Kumara. The fielder Matt Henry got rid of the ball quickly and hurled it towards the bowler as fast as he could.
Blair Tickner gathered the ball cleanly and flicked the bails off while the batter was short of the crease. But since the battery of one bail wasn’t working, the light didn’t flicker until the other bail was off the stump groove. In that fraction of a second, Chamika Karunaratne managed to dive his way inside the crease and the third umpire had no choice but to give him not out.
After the not-out call, some of the New Zealand team fielders seemed bemused and started questioning the on-field umpires whether the right decision was made or not. Meanwhile, Chamika Karunaratne was seen raising his hand towards the Kiwi fielders as if he was apologising to them for the said incident.
Looking ahead, the Black Caps will go to Seddon Park in Hamilton for the second ODI with plans to get an unassailable 2-0 lead in the series. At the same time, Sri Lanka will have to pull their socks up, especially in the batting department, to have any chance to stay in the ODI series and earn those valuable ICC CWC Super League points for direct World Cup qualification.
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