A gusty half-century by Dhananjaya de Silva and all-round efforts from Maheesh Theekshana and Wanindu Hasaranga helped Sri Lanka overcome a valiant effort by the Netherlands in their ICC Cricket World Cup Super Six match on Friday.

Sri Lanka won by 21 runs and are at the top of the Super Six stage points table with six points. Netherlands are in fourth place with two points. Sri Lanka opted to bat first and did not have a good start, losing opener Pathum Nissanka on the very first ball.

They lost two more wickets in less than five overs. Ryan Klein trapped Kusal Mendis for 10, while van Beek removed Sadeera Samarawickrama in the very next over for just one run.

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Van Beek picked up his third wicket in the seventh over and removed in-form Charith Asalanka for just two.

Sri Lanka lost half their team for 67. It was the big wicket of Dimuth Karunaratne, who was looking to rebuild and had put up a 33-run fifth-wicket stand with Dhananjaya de Silva. Dimuth managed 33 runs in 51 balls.

From that point, De Silva was the lone man standing for Sri Lanka as they kept losing wickets at regular intervals. Wanindu Hasaranga showed some promise with a couple of lofty blows but he too perished for 20. Maheesh Theekshana scored valuable 28 runs.

De Silva continued to resist and looked to up the ante smashing a six and couple of fours in one Shariz Ahmad over. He took Sri Lanka’s score past the 200-run mark but fell just seven runs short of a hundred. His 111-ball knock had eight fours and two sixes.

The Netherlands bowled the Lankans out for 213 in the 48th over. This was Sri Lanka’s second-lowest total against an Associate team. van Beek (3/26) and Bas de Leede (3/42) were the pick of the bowlers for the Netherlands.

The Netherlands struggled in the chase of 214 and lost their openers Vikramjit Singh and Max o’Dowd for a duck. Wesley Barresi and Bas de Leede began the work of rebuilding for Netherlands and brought up a half-century stand for the third wicket. Barresi got his 7th ODI fifty as well.

The Dutch faltered after the wicket of Barresi (52 in 50 balls, with six fours and a six) and were soon five down, needing 87 runs to win. Leede also scored 41 in 53 balls, with three boundaries.

Maheesh Theekshana picked up two wickets in his fifth over to hit Netherlands further. But captain Scott Edwards refused to go down without a fight. He shared crucial stands with the lower order to give his team hope.

However, he was left stranded at the other end on 67* in 68 balls as the team fell 22 runs short of the desired target. The Netherlands were bowled out for 192 in 40 overs.

Theekshana (3/31) and Hasaranga (2/53) were the pick of the bowlers for SL. Dhananjaya got the ‘Player of the Match’ for his fifty. 

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