Sri Lanka humbled England by 8 wickets on Thursday in Bengaluru’s M. Chinnaswamy stadium to climb to the 5th spot in the points table of the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2023.
While the defending champions had a disappointing outing in Bengaluru, Sri Lanka’s performance was nothing short of exceptional, as they tore through the England attack with remarkable bowling contributions from Maheesh Theekshana and the recalled pair of Lahiru Kumara and Angelo Mathews.
Sri Lanka’s pursuit of a modest target of 157 was orchestrated masterfully, with Pathum Nissanka and Sadeera Samarawickrama taking center stage and delivering outstanding half-centuries. Despite an initial glimmer of hope for England as David Willey claimed early wickets in the Powerplay, the resilience and counterattacking prowess of Nissanka and Samarawickrama soon eclipsed any early setbacks, as they chased down the total in mere 24.2 overs.
These two dynamic batsmen not only solidified the Sri Lankan innings but also propelled it to a resounding victory, substantially improving their team’s net run rate and leaving spectators in awe of their performance.
The result means that England’s defence of their World Cup crown is in serious jeopardy. To have any shot at reaching the semi-finals, Jos Buttler’s team must not only win all their remaining games but also make a substantial improvement in their net run rate and hope that other match results align in their favour.