Rain played spoilsport for the 3rd time during New Zealand’s tour of Sri Lanka, but this time the match yielded a result as Sri Lanka, chasing New Zealand’s score of 250 got to 118/3 in the 23rd over before heavy rains settled in and no further play was possible, won the game by 14 runs via the D/L method.
Lasith Malinga starred with the ball picking up 2 wickets to ensure New Zealand never got away and restricted the visitors to 250 while T Dilshan and Mahela Jayawardene batted well during the chase.
Earlier, Ross Taylor and Bradley-John Watling cracked half-centuries to help New Zealand post a competitive total. Skipper Taylor smashed two sixes and seven fours in a brisk 62-ball 72 for his 21st half-century in one-dayers, while Watling made an impressive 55 with six fours for his fourth fifty.
The New Zealand captain added 91 for the fourth wicket with James Franklin (35 not out) before being caught by Angelo Mathews in the covers off paceman Nuwan Kulasekara in the 46th over. Opener Rob Nicol (46) was the other main scorer.
Chasing a tricky target, Sri Lanka lost Upul Tharanga very early but T Dilshan and Kumar Sangakkara got together to frustrate the visitors and deny them any further success. Rain made an appearance for the first time during the day and the match was stopped for close to an hour. On resumption, Sri Lanka lost Sangakkara off the 3rd ball, but Dilshan and Jayawardene batted well to put the home team back in command.
Dilshan was out soon after but Sri Lanka were ahead of the asking rate. Rain returned soon after and Sri Lanka were awarded the match via the D/L method as they were 14 runs ahead of the par score of 104. (Cric Buzz)