West Indies exit as Gunawardena shines

Avishka Gunawardena hit a dazzling century containing 19 fours to set up Sri Lanka's convincing 108 run victory over the West Indies in the opening match of the ICC Knock-out tournament here yesterday.

Avishka Gunawardena hit a dazzling century containing 19 fours to set up Sri Lanka's convincing 108 run victory over the West Indies in the opening match of the ICC Knock-out tournament here yesterday.

Gunawardena hit 132 as the former World Cup-winners Sri Lankans reached 287 for 6 in their 50 overs.

A 74-run seventh wicket partnership between Laurie Williams (41) and Mahendra Nagamootoo (33) gave the West Indies a glimmer of hope after their first four wickets had gone for 41. But it turned out to be too little too late.

The seeds of defeat had been sown earlier as Gunawardena was dropped twice in one over and survived a bungled run-out attempt. He was finally bowled around the legs by Nixon McLean after facing 146 balls.

After losing their captain, Sanath Jayasuriya, and Marvan Attapattu for just 10 runs, Gunawardena combined with Mahela Jayawardena for a third-wicket partnership of 160 that rescued the innings.

Missing the experience of Curtly Ambrose and Courtney Walsh, the young West Indies' attack was never penetrating. The newcomer Kerry Jeremy was hit for 22 in his first two overs alone and most were guilty of failing to find line and length.

Only Mervyn Dillon's first five overs rose above mediocrity - he took two wickets and conceded just six runs. The third-wicket partnership was broken by the 20-year-old Antiguan paceman, Jeremy, who had Jayawardena caught by the wicketkeeper Courtney Browne for 72. Browne's total, which came off 71 balls, included nine fours and a six.

Gunawardena finally succumbed to McLean, who clean-bowled him in the 45th over. However, Sri Lanka failed to lose momentum and the last 10 overs of their innings yielded 82 runs to set a difficult target for the West Indies. The best West Indian bowlers were Dillon and McLean, who ended up with two wickets for 46 and 2 for 56, respectively off their 10 overs.

Nuwan Zoysa led the Sri Lankan attack in their charge for victory, taking 3 wickets for 34 runs and the West Indies were unable to find an answer as they capitulated for 179. Even Brian Lara could muster only five runs before he was caught off the bowling of Zoysa. Sri Lanka will now play Pakistan on Sunday - while the West Indies return home.

NAIROBI SCOREBOARD

West Indies won toss

SRI LANKA

*S T Jayasuriya c Browne b Dillon 2 D A Gunawardene b McLean 132 M S Atapattu b Dillon 2 D P M Jayawardene c Browne b Jeremy 72 K Sangakkara run out 2 R P Arnold b McLean 41 ÿR S Kaluwitharana not out 16 W P U Vaas not out 7 Extras (lb4, w8, nb1) 13 Total (for 6, 50 overs) 287

Fall: 1-8, 2-10, 3-170, 4-177, 5-250, 6-274.

Did not bat: D N T Zoysa, G P Wickramasinghe, M Muralitharan.

Bowling: Dillon 10-2-46-2; McLean 10-0-56-2; Jeremy 8-0-54-1; Williams 10-0-59-0; Samuels 6-0-30-0; Nagamootoo 6-0-38-0.

WEST INDIES

*S L Campbell run out 20 ÿC O Browne c Kaluwitharana b Zoysa 15 B C Lara c Kaluwitharana b Zoysa 5 W W Hinds c Jayawardene b Wickramasinghe 20 S C Joseph c Kaluwitharana b Zoysa 0 M Samuels c & b Wickramasinghe 19 L R Williams c Gunawardene b Jayasuriya 41 M V Nagamootoo run out 33 N A M McLean b Arnold 8 M Dillon c Vaas b Jayasuriya 6 K C B Jeremy not out 4 Extras (lb4, w2, nb2) 8 Total (46.4 overs) 179

Fall: 1-34, 2-37, 3-41, 4-41, 5-76, 6-85, 7-159, 8-160, 9-170.

Bowling: Vaas 8-1-36-0; Zoysa 7-0-34-3; Wickramasinghe 6-0-37-2; Muralitharan 10-4-9-0; Jayasuriya 10-1-30-2; Arnold 5.4-0-29-1.

Umpires: S Venkat (Ind) & P Willey (Eng).

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