The Cool Guy Always Beats the Baxter
Tuesday, April 24th, 2007 at
Kiwi mauled by rampant Lankan tiger
Well, we did tell you that the Lankan attack was brilliant and lethal. And we told you that the Lankans would win, because their class would differentiate them from a rather plain, if very talented and consistent, New Zealand side. But we had no idea just how dominant the victory would be, as Sri Lanka won by 81 runs. After losing two wickets — Jayasuriya and Sangakkara! — relatively early, Mahela Jayawardene built a remarkable innings, scoring 115 off 109 balls, and powering his side to an imposing 5/289. The Kiwis never had a chance chasing that kind of target — not when Murali, Malinga, and Vaas were in such fine form.
And that’s really what this match came down to — the fact that Sri Lanka is a truly special, brilliant side. We’ve said for some time that they’re really the only team that can hope to beat Australia, because only they have the creativity, talent and class do so. New Zealand is a perfectly good team, and should be able to beat just about everyone other than SL and Australia. But they don’t have the spark of genius
about them. Not in their batting, not in their fielding, and — with the exception of the exceptional Mr. Bond — not in their bowling. Sri Lanka does. That doesn’t mean SL can’t lose to lesser teams — they should have lost to England in the Super 8s. But it does mean that, on their day, SL can stand toe to toe with the Aussies. And even though I’m an Australia fan, I do want a great final. I think that SL will give us the game we all want.
Cricket • Cricket World Cup • New Zealand • Sri Lanka
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