England make it four wins from four after a 26 run victory over Sri Lanka in Sharjah. As it happened below.
Full scorecard here
Shyam A. Krishna, Senior Associate Editor
England scampered to their fourth victory in the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup. The 26-run win over Sri Lanka in a Group 1 game in Sharjah was scripted on the strength of a marvellous century from Jos Buttler. His 67-ball 101 helped England post 163/4 in 20 overs after traversing the treacherous waters at 35/3.
Sri Lanka’s chase never really got going, although Charith Asalanka (21) and Bhanuka Rajapaksa (26) threatened briefly. From 76/5, captain Dasun Shanaka (26) and Wanindu Hasaranga breathed life into the Sri Lankan innings with a 26-ball 53-run sixth-wicket stand. But Hasaranga’s dismissal sent Sri Lanka into a tailspin.
England's unbeaten run continues
It's all over. Theekshana hammers Ali down to midwicket for a catch and Sri Lanka are all out for 137. England win by 26 runs
Another one. This time Chamika Karunaratne pulls Moeen Ali down to long-on for an easy catch. 134/ in 18.2 overs
The wheels have come off the Sri Lankan chase. Captain Dasun Shanaka is run out. The rest is a formality. 130/7 in 17.2 overs
Sri Lanka's frantic chase been brought to a halt. Hasaranga (34), who has been powering the revival, fell to superb catch on the long off boundary. Roy ran and dived to pick up the catch and flicked it to Sam Billings running in from extra cover to complete it. 130/6 in 17.1 overs
The run rate is hovering above 10. Which means, Sri Lanka need at least one real big over.
For the Sri Lankans, this match is far from over. Dasun Shanaka and Wanindu Hasaranga are pulling out some big hits, and there could be a twist in the tale. England need a wicket now, or this could be anybody's game. 113/5 in 15 overs
75 needed in 42 balls. Sri Lanka require a couple of big overs, if they are to make a match of it. After Rajapaksa's exit, runs have been coming in a trickle. And that won't help. 89/5 in 13 overs
A typical Rajapaksa dismissal. A fiercely pulled six off Chris Woakes was followed by a fiery drive through the extra cover. And then the letdown. A catch down long-on's throat. Sri Lanka slump to 76/5 in 10.5 overs
Halfway mark of Sri Lankan innings. 66/4 in 10 overs. And the batting hasn't inspired confidence. England were 47/3 at this stage, but they had Buttler. Can Rajapaksa do a Buttler? Or else, there's no escape route for Sri Lanka.
England didn't have to wait long for the fourth wicket. Chris Jordan traps Avishka Fernando in front with a searing yorker. Sri Lanka are hurtling towards defeat. 75/4 in 8.3 overs
A rare drop from England. Chris Woakes spilled a straight forward catch at square leg after Bhanuka Rajapaksa swung at Adil Rashid. Lucky escape or else Sri Lanka would have been in dire straits. 55/3 in 8.1 overs
Another wicket down, and Sri Lankan chase is unravelling. Morgan runs back from extra cover to take a fine catch and Kushal Perera is dismissed by Adil Rashid. 34/3 in 5.1 overs
After Pathum Nissanka's run out in the third ball of the innings, Charith Asalanla had unfurled some fine strokes and was severe on Moeen Ali. But a rush of blood against leg-spinner Adil Rashid brought about his downfall. Sri Lanka are in trouble. Two more overs of powerplay left, and they have to make good use of it. Or else the middle overs will be a drag.
Sri Lankan chase runs into trouble. Two wickets down, and the powerplay is still on 26/2 in 3.4 overs
Pathum Nissanka falls after just the third ball. Kusal Perera calls for a quick single, but Morgan swoops onto the ball and throws in to Buttler, who has the bails off before the Sri Lankan can get back to the crease. No need to take that single.
Shyam A. Krishna, Senior Associate Editor
Jos Buttler is the consummate one-day batsman. He’s been the dasher in England’s first three games, and at Sharjah on Monday, Buttler displayed a different facet of his game. With England in trouble at 35/3 in the powerplay, Buttler played the Sri Lankan spinners with caution before firing away in the slog overs. And that enabled England to post 163/4 in 20 overs in the Group 1 game.
A six off the last ball of the innings helped Butler to his century, the first of the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2021. His 67-ball 101 and the 112-run fourth with wicket stand with captain Eoin Morgan (40) steered England to a winning total after they dawdled at 47/3 in 10 overs.
Sri Lankan batting hasn’t been great. And pressure could undermine their chase.
Let's see what Mr Cricket UAE Anis Sajan made of that...
100 for Jos Buttler
A six off the last ball of the match. That's a century for Jos Buttler. The first of the ICC Men's T20 World Cup 2021. And England finish at 162/4 in 20 overs. A very good total on this pitch.
Hasaranga has the last laugh. Morgan lashes him for a six and he hits backs by castling Morgan. The Egnland captain has done a fine job by scoring 40 and adding 112 with Buttler. 147/4 in 18.2 overs
Buttler blazes away with two sixes and a four. Exactly what England wanted. They should get near 160. Buttler 86 has become the highest scorer in Super 12s. 141/3 in 18 overs.
England still can't seem to power away. One six from Morgan in two overs. Sri Lankans are bowling well, they are not giving away too many loose balls. The slog overs now. England should blaze away. They have seven wickets in hand. 123/3 in 17.1 overs
Captain Eoin Morgan has struggled with his timing the early part of the evening. Time out in the middle helped find his touch, and he's launched Lahiru Kumara over long-off. And Buttler adds his brand of lofted drive over long-off, and another one straight over the field. 20 runs from the over. England wrest control. 105/3 in 15 overs
A 50 for Buttler. Applause all around. It was a different kind of innings. Not the dashing one seen so far. This was hard graft. Especially after England lost three wickets in the powerplay. He's held the innnings together without missing out on scoring opportunities. 83/3 in 14 overs
There's a sizeable Sri Lankan crowd and they are enjoying every moment of it. But their cheers were dampened by Buttler specials. An on-drive that sliced long-on and midwicket. He followed that with a six over midwicket. Super shot. England starting to press the accelerator. 75/3 in 13 overs
England are 47/3 in 10 overs. It's been a crawl for them. They have had a taste of the slow Sharjah wicket and are struggling. Even the batsman in form, Jos Buttler, cannot find the boundaries. The Sri Lankans have bowled some tight lines, especially the spinners, Hasaranga and Theekshana.
The first over flourish has given way to a grind. England are under pressure for the first time in the tournament. The loss of three wickets has stifled the scoring, and even Buttler is struggling to get the spinners out of the square. And the seamers too are providing superb support. 44/3 in 9 overs
An interesting duel between Buttler and Theekshana. The English opener, who put the Aussie attack to sword, is finding it difficult to attack the Sri Lankan off-spinners. 41/3 in 8 overs.
More trouble for England. New man Bairstow is trapped lbw by leggie Hasaranga. A crisis, that's new for England in this World Cup. Let's see how they cope. 35/3 in 5.2 overs
Sri Lanka strike again. Dawid Malan is out, bowled by Chameera for 6. Sri Lankans are driving home the advantage of winning the toss. Two down in the powerplay, that's will impact the scoring and the middle overs. But England bat deep. 34/2 in 5 overs
Sri Lankan spinners seem to keep the English batsmen quiet. One over of Hasaranga, and off-break bowler Maheesh Theekshana took over. England score will depend on how they tackle the spinners. So far, they are content to play them out. And score mainly against the seamers 34/1 in 4.3 overs
Looks like I wrote too early. First strike for Sri Lanka from the second ball of the second over. Roy takes an ugly swing at leg-spinner Wanindu Hasaranga, and is bowled. 12/1 in 1.2 overs
England are away, batting first for the first time in the T20 World Cup 2021. Couple of fine shots from Jason Roy, including an extra-cover drive, off Dushmantha Chameera. Wicket looks good so far, Roy didn't have any problems. Could well be a high scoring match, judging from the first over. 12/0 in 1 over
Both teams are fielding unchanged playing XI
ENGLAND: 1 Jason Roy, 2 Jos Buttler (wk), 3 Dawid Malan, 4 Jonny Bairstow, 5 Eoin Morgan (capt), 6 Liam Livingstone, 7 Moeen Ali, 8 Chris Woakes, 9 Chris Jordan, 10 Adil Rashid, 11 Tymal Mills
SRI LANKA: 1 Pathum Nissanka, 2 Kusal Perera (wk), 3 Charith Asalanka, 4 Dhananjaya de Silva, 5 Bhanuka Rajapaksa, 6 Dasun Shanaka (capt), 7 Chamika Karunaratne, 8 Wanindu Hasaranga, 9 Dushmantha Chameera, 10 Maheesh Theekshana, 11 Lahiru Kumara
Sri Lanka win the toss and opt to bowl. So England will bat first for the first time in the tournament. They were chasing in the last three games.
Welcome to Match 29 of the ICC T20 World Cup. Group 1 game at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium - England vs Sri Lanka
Powerful England should rout a struggling Sri Lanka
Shyam A. Krishna, Senior Associate Editor
England have been ruthless at the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup. Three big wins are proof of their dominance that should continue when they take on the Sri Lankans, who have suffered two losses. The Sharjah Cricket Stadium pitch is sluggish, but batsmen can play the big shots if they are patient enough. That’s what Pathum Nissanka showed in Sri Lanka’s previous match.
Nissanka was the lone bright spot in the Sri Lankan batting against the South Africans, while leg-spinner Wanindu Hasaranga’s hat-trick wasn’t enough to eke out a win. That’s worry against a powerful English batting led by the brilliant Jos Buttler. And Eoin Morgan’s side have a varied and potent attack that has hardly been stretched.
Dasun Shanka-led Sri Lanka are struggling to stay afloat, so a win over England is unlikely. Can they spring a surprise on Monday? Let’s find out.