Pakistan, New Zealand and Afghanistan – these three teams are still dreaming of the semi-finals. On the other hand, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, England and the Netherlands are aiming for the 2025 Champions Trophy.
Today, both New Zealand and Sri Lanka went down to win. But Sri Lanka lost wickets from the beginning when they came to bat. The team lost 9 wickets for 128 runs and finally scored 171 runs. The highest runs came in the tenth wicket pair.
As their hopes of playing in the Champions Trophy are almost over, Bangladesh’s dream has also brightened. Meanwhile, Pakistan’s semi-final hopes are almost over.
It was known before the match that New Zealand would win today by a margin of 130 runs more than Pakistan’s own match. New Zealand made the calculations a little more complicated by fielding first in Bangalore today. Pakistan’s fate depended on how many runs Sri Lanka scored and how many overs New Zealand chased those runs.
On the other hand, Sri Lanka also has its own destiny. Because the country is behind Bangladesh in run rate. It was important for them to win today to stay safe. But since the dismissal of Pathum Nishanka in the second over, the team has progressed in a very strange manner. At one end, Kushal Perera stormed and got a 22-ball fifty. But at the other end, Kushal Mendis and Sadira Samaravikrama are back in single figures.
Keeping Charith Asalaankka aside, Perera brought the team to 70 runs in 9 overs. But the fourth wicket stand of 38 runs was broken when Asalanka (8) returned to Trent Boult’s third victim. Pererao returned with the score at 70. Angelo Mathews and Dhananjaya de Silva tried to take the lead after Perera was dismissed with 9 fours and 2 sixes in 28 balls.
A pair of 34 runs crossed a hundred. But both of them came back with slip catches in two successive overs of Santner. Then the team picked up runs bit by bit. Mahesh Tikshana and Madushanka set the record for Sri Lanka’s 10th wicket partnership in the World Cup in their career-highest innings.
But the Sri Lankans may not believe that it is a collection to bring victory. Boult took 3 wickets, Ferguson and Santner took 2 wickets each.
With Sri Lanka being bowled out for so few runs, it became easy for New Zealand to get ahead in the run-rate. And Pakistan may have to come down with an incredible goal against England.