Jayawardene leads SL fightback against Afghanistan


DUNEDIN:  Sri Lanka became just the second team to have both openers fall for golden ducks in the same one-day international innings when they collapsed at the start of their World Cup run-chase against Afghanistan on Sunday.

Set a target of 233 for victory, Sri Lanka were in immediate trouble at Dunedin’s University Oval when Lahiru Thirimanne was trapped leg before wicket by the first ball of the innings from Dawlat Zadran.

In the second over, Tillakaratne Dilshan was caught behind off the first ball he faced from Shapoor Zadran.

The collapse did not end there, with Kumar Sangakkara bowled for seven and Dimuth Karunaratne out for 23, both falling to Hamid Hassan as former champions Sri Lanka slumped to 51 for four against World Cup debutants Afghanistan.

However, Mahela Jayawardene led fightback of his team with 72 runs off 84 balls till 30th over, along with support from captain Angelo Mathews. Sri Lanka reached 130 for 4 by 30th over.

The one previous occasion when both openers fell for golden ducks in an ODI was in 2006 when West Indies quick Fidel Edwards removed the Zimbabwe pair of Piet Rinke and Terry Duffin in the first four balls of the innings at Georgetown, Guyana.

West Indies won that match by 82 runs.