Sri Lanka avoided another negative result to pick up the first win of their International Cricket Council (ICC) World Cup 2023 campaign in their match against the Netherlands on Saturday at the Eknana Sports City in Lucknow.
In the first of the two matches today, the Netherlands had won the toss and decided to bat first. The Dutch team came into this match brimming with confidence on the back of their shock win against early high-flyers South Africa.
However, the Dutch batting was a similar story to that of their game against the Proteas. As the top order failed and the team kept losing wickets at regular intervals, Sybrand Engelbrecht and Logan van Beek stood out as the heros. Engelbrecht scored 70 off 82 and van Beek scored 59 of 75 to again post a competitive total of 262 runs.
For Sri Lanka, Dilshan Madushanka and Kasun Rajitha shone with the ball picking up four wickets apiece with Maheesh Theekshana getting one.
In response, Sri Lanka chased down the total with five wickets and 10 balls to spare. Opener Pathum Nissanka scoring a brilliant 50 to set the team up even as partner Kusal Parera was sent home early. After Nissanka’s dismissal, it was Sadeera Samarawickrama whose 91 off 107 was the main impetus for the Lankans in their chase.
Charith Asalanka (44) and Dhananjaya de Silva (30) were crucial contributions which in the end proved just enough to take the team over the line. For the Netherlands, Aryan Dutt shone with the ball picking up three of the five wickets, while Paul van Meekeren and Colin Ackermann got one each.
Sri Lanka’s five-wicket win becomes their first of the campaign and picks them from the bottom of the table. They now sit ninth above Afghanistan on a better net run rate (NRR).