ICL: Indian Cricket League

Dhoni Leads From the Front

Written by Athar Khan on July 4th, 2008   (341 views)

Dhoni - Star Of The Show.Mahendra Singh Dhoni led from the front as India defeated Sri Lanka by six wickets to secure their place in the final of the Asia Cup.

Dhoni cracked a rapid 67 runs from 62 deliveries in the Super Four match, and was well supported by Suresh Raina (54) as they capitalised on another flying start from openers Gautam Gambhir (68) and Virender Sehwag (42).

Half-centuries from Mahela Jayawardene (50), Chamara Kapugedera (75) and Chamara Silva (50), plus a breezy 43 from Sanath Jayasuriya, had earlier powered Sri Lanka to 308 for eight.

But India overhauled that target in 46.5 overs with Yuvraj Singh (36) and Rohit Sharma (22) planting the finishing touches.

India’s win renders Friday’s match between Pakistan and Bangladesh inconsequential as the hosts have no chance of making the final.

Sri Lanka, who had topped the Super Four table with six points prior to this outing, had already made the final.

India’s bowlers turned in a much-improved performance with Ishant Sharma picking up early wickets, but shoddy fielding and a fine innings from Kapugedera helped Sri Lanka to a challenging total.

Sehwag and Gambhir set about the chase in typically brisk fashion, bringing up India’s 50 in just 39 deliveries.

Dilhara Fernando, one of two changes made to the Sri Lanka side, in particular found himself on the receiving end of some hard hitting as he conceded 28 runs in his first three overs.

The departure of Sehwag gave Sri Lanka some respite, but Raina quickly found his rhythm and added 42 runs for the second wicket with Gambhir.

As with Sehwag’s dismissal, the scoring rate dipped marginally with the departure of Gambhir, but only just.

Dhoni took up the chase and eased to a half-century - his second in as many days - off just 49 deliveries.

Source: Cricket365

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