Sri Lanka have secured qualification to the Super 12 round of the Men’s T20 World Cup 2022 with a 16-run win over Netherlands, who have also advanced, despite the loss.
After winning the toss at the GMHBA Stadium in Victoria, Australia, Sri Lanka posted 162 for six, Kusal Mendis doing most of the heavy lifting with his 79 runs off 44 balls that included five fours and five sixes.
He was assisted by Charith Asalanka who made 31 runs on a surface that did not allow for hitting through the line.
Despite their pace attack being depleted due to injuries to Pramod Madushan and Dushmantha Chameera, Sri Lanka managed to contain Netherlands to 146 for nine.
It started in the powerplay where they limited the Dutch side to 40 for two. Wanindu Hasaranga proved too great a challenge for the middle order as he claimed three for 28 from four overs.
By the final over the Netherlands needed 23 to secure their place in the next round but Lahiru Kumara held his nerve, conceding just six and securing safe passage into the Super 12s. Max O’Dowd carried his bat in a solo effort of 71 with six fours and three sixes
Kusal Mendis would claim the Player of the Match award with 79.
Netherlands had to wait until the later game concluded to find out where their fate would lie but after the United Arab Emirates (UAE) beat Namibia by seven runs, they too will take part in the Super 12s.
Sri Lanka will go into Super 12s Group 1 with Afghanistan, Australia, England and New Zealand. A team yet to be decided from the Group B qualifiers will complete that group.
Meanwhile Netherlands will be paired in Group 2 with Bangladesh, India, Pakistan, South Africa and a team from the Group B qualifiers.
Sri Lanka will be without Dushmantha Chameera for the rest of the competition after he suffered a grade two tear in the calf of his landing foot when completing his fourth over against UAE on Tuesday.
Sri Lanka 162-6 in 20 overs (Kusal Mendis 79, Charith Asalanka 31; Paul van Meekeren 2-25). Netherlands 146-9 in 20 overs (Max O’Dowd 71*, Edwards 21, Hasaranga 3-28, Theekshana 2-32). Sri Lanka won by 16 runs.
United Arab Emirates 148 for 3 (Waseem 50, Rizwan 43). Namibia 141 for 8 (Wiese 55, Hameed 2-17, Zahoor 2-20). United Arab Emirates won by 7 runs.