World Twenty20: Rangana Herath leaves Pakistan hopes in tailspin

Sri Lanka 139-4 Pakistan 123-7 (Sri Lanka win by 16 runs)

The World Twenty20 received the result it needed and deserved last night. Sri Lanka, the host nation, defeated Pakistan by 16 runs.

It was hardly a pristine performance with nerves taking hold as they defended a to tal of 139 for 4. But that applied to Pakistan too and the loss of too many wickets simply left them with too much to do.

All tournaments benefit from a decent run by the hosts, of course, but Sri Lanka have also looked the part in the last fortnight. Their only loss was to South Africa in a group match so abbreviated (seven overs a side) that blinking was ill advised.

The pitch played an important part in their progress to the final on Sunday, where they will play Australia or West Indies. It was weary, taking spin and difficult to score off.

Sri Lanka might still have made more than they did after an assured start. Mahela Jayawardene, their captain, is in supreme form and by playing the ball late and delicately he made 42 off 36 balls with seven fours.

When he made his first mistake, a paddle shot straight to short fine leg, Kumar Sangakkara, his deputy, also played like a man with a mission. But after his dismissal the innings stultified. Only a last over which yielded 16 runs from the otherwise impeccable Umar Gul could make them reasonably satisfied.

It was anybody's game at that point and Pakistan were gifted some runs at the start with wides and fielding lapses. Spin, however, lurked and both Ajantha Mendis and Rangana Herath profited.

While Pakistan's captain, Mohammad Hafeez , remained, a close match was in prospect. But having survived two chances he charged down the pitch to Herath, who finished with 3 for 25, and Sangakkara, who had an age to take off the bails, did not waste a millisecond. The rest was huffing and puffing as they were left needing 23 off the final over.

Results & fixtures

Yesterday (Colombo): Sri Lanka 139-4 [Jayawardene 42] bt Pakistan 123-7 [Hafeez 42; Herath 3-25] by 16 runs.

Today (Colombo): Australia v West Indies (2.30pm BST)

Final (Sunday, 2.30pm, Colombo): Sri Lanka v Australia/West Indies

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

No postcode? No vote

Floating voters

How living on a houseboat meant I didn't officially 'exist'
Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin

By Reason of Insanity

Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin
Power dressing is back – but no shoulderpads!

Power dressing is back

But banish all thoughts of Eighties shoulderpads
Spanish stone-age cave paintings 'under threat' after being re-opened to the public

Spanish stone-age cave paintings in Altamira 'under threat'

Caves were re-opened to the public
'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'

Vince Cable interview

'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'
Election 2015: How many of the Government's coalition agreement promises have been kept?

Promises, promises

But how many coalition agreement pledges have been kept?
The Gaza fisherman who built his own reef - and was shot dead there by an Israeli gunboat

The death of a Gaza fisherman

He built his own reef, and was fatally shot there by an Israeli gunboat
Saudi Arabia's airstrikes in Yemen are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Saudi airstrikes are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Arab intervention in Yemen risks entrenching Sunni-Shia divide and handing a victory to Isis, says Patrick Cockburn
Zayn Malik's departure from One Direction shows the perils of fame in the age of social media

The only direction Zayn could go

We wince at the anguish of One Direction's fans, but Malik's departure shows the perils of fame in the age of social media
Young Magician of the Year 2015: Meet the schoolgirl from Newcastle who has her heart set on being the competition's first female winner

Spells like teen spirit

A 16-year-old from Newcastle has set her heart on being the first female to win Young Magician of the Year. Jonathan Owen meets her
Jonathan Anderson: If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

British designer Jonathan Anderson is putting his stamp on venerable house Loewe
Number plates scheme could provide a licence to offend in the land of the free

Licence to offend in the land of the free

Cash-strapped states have hit on a way of making money out of drivers that may be in collision with the First Amendment, says Rupert Cornwell
From farm to fork: Meet the Cornish fishermen, vegetable-growers and butchers causing a stir in London's top restaurants

From farm to fork in Cornwall

One man is bringing together Cornwall's most accomplished growers, fishermen and butchers with London's best chefs to put the finest, freshest produce on the plates of some of the country’s best restaurants
Robert Parker interview: The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes

Robert Parker interview

The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes
Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

We exaggerate regional traits and turn them into jokes - and those on the receiving end are in on it too, says DJ Taylor