World T20: England Knock Defending Champions Sri Lanka Out of Tournament
England put up a spirited performance to beat defending champions Sri Lanka by 10 runs and knock them out of the tournament. With this win, they qualified for the semi-finals and also knocked South Africa out of the tournament.
Sri Lanka chose to field in this crucial match against England. Rangana Herath struck in his first over as he trapped Alex Hales lbw for 0. (Picture credits: AFP)
However, Jason Roy and Joe Root shared a strong partnership, with both batsmen aggressively going after the spinners.
Root was continuing his good form which has made him the leading run-getter in the 2016 ICC World T20 so far.
Jeffrey Vandersay struck twice by removing Root and Roy in quick succession to boost Sri Lanka.
Vandersay was the best bowler on display as he finished with figures of 4-0-26-2.
However, Jos Buttler and Eoin Morgan stitched a good partnership which put tremendous pressure on Sri Lanka.
Buttler blasted his fourth fifty off 28 balls as England plundered 72 runs in the last five overs to finish on 171/4 in 20 overs.
David Willey gave England the perfect start when he dismissed Tillakaratne Dilshan for 2.
Chris Jordan also chipped in by removing Dinesh Chandimal as Sri Lanka were left reeling.
Ben Stokes effected a run-out of Lahiru Thirimanne and Sri Lanka were reduced to 17/4.
However, Angelo Mathews refused to give up and he shared an 80-run stand with Chamara Kapugedera to revive Sri Lanka.
Mathews notched up his fourth fifty and Sri Lanka closed in on England's target. It seemed that the skipper would single-handedly knock England out of the tournament.
However, Stokes and Jordan produced two brilliant overs and Sri Lanka lost the match by 10 runs. The defending champions were out of the tournament.
With this win, England qualified for the semi-finals and they not only knocked Sri Lanka out, they dumped South Africa out of the tournament as well.
England will now take on New Zealand in the first semi-final that will be played at the Feroz Shah Kotla on March 30.