Warm-up Match: Sri Lanka 'A' v New Zealanders at Colombo, 16 Jul 2001
Rex Clementine

New Zealanders innings: 25 overs, End of Innings.,
Sri Lanka 'A' innings: 25 Overs,
Pre-game: Toss,


Like their batsmen this morning, the Kiwi bowlers have made maximum use of their only warm-up match this afternoon against Sri Lanka A at NCC Grounds in Colombo today.

Chasing an imposing target of 294 Sri Lanka A lost opener Shantha Kalavitigoda for five with the score on 11. The batsman mistimed a pull off a Darryl Tuffey delivery and was caught by Dion Nash at short mid wicket.

With no addition to the score, Sri Lanka A also lost Michael Vandort. The batsman pushed tentatively at a delivery and missed and was given out leg before off Kyle Mills.

Upeka Fernando played an entertaining cameo of 26 in 35 balls with five boundaries, most of which were hit square of the wicket and straight down the ground as Tuffey over pitched. His innings ended when he edged to skipper Stephan Fleming at the first slip trying to flash at a wide Tuffey delivery.

The next to go was T.M. Dilshan. The batsman who has been struggling to come to terms with his batting lately, tried to flick the ball on to the on side, but top edged the delivery to Dion Nash at mid-on. He had scored just five runs and Sri Lanka A were 39 for four.

Mills bowled exceptionally well in his first spell where he returned economical figures (5-1-08-2). Tuffey, bowling from the Tennis Court End, was more expensive conceding 32 runs in his five over spell.

Sri Lanka's 50 came in the 12th over of the innings.

Chamara Silva, who has been recalled to the national side, failed to make any impression here. He was clean bowled by Jacob Oram as he tried to force a delivery through the off side. He had scored just six. Dion Nash then dismissed Upul Chandana, as the batsman hit straight to Craig McMillan at mid off. Sri Lanka were 78 for six.

The spin of Daniel Vettori was introduced in the 20th over of the game from the SSC End. From the Tennis Court End in the next over captain Stephan Fleming introduced Chris Harris. Both bowlers have an important role to play on Sri Lanka's slow pitches and both started economically.

Sri Lanka were 92 for six at the end of the 25th over with Thilan Samaraweera on 22 and Muthumudalige Pushpakumara on 11.


All the leading New Zealand batsmen gained valuable match practice in their game against Sri Lanka A ahead of the Coca Cola Cup which gets underway on the 18th. At the end of their allotted 50 overs they ended up scoring an imposing 293 for three with almost six runs an over.

Captain Stephan Fleming, fresh from county duties with Middlesex, spent 46-minutes at the crease, but never felt confident. Off-spinner, Muthumudalige Pushpakumara bowling the 34th over of the innings and his third, got rid of the New Zealand skipper when he wet for a big off drive and missed the ball to be clean bowled. The captain made 22 facing 35 balls.

Lou Vincent joined Craig McMillan and the Kiwis, who were suspicious against the Sri Lankan spinners, suddenly started looked threatening as they went for their strokes using their feet.

Pushpakumara was hit for 21 runs in his fifth over with the second and the fourth balls going for sixes and the third and the fifth going for boundaries. 20 of the 21 runs came from the bat of McMillan.

The first six was a lofted drive over the head of mid-off while the second one was a pull. Before that over McMillan was on 30 in 45 balls, but in just four more deliveries he had gone past the 50 mark.

In order to give more batting practice to the other batsmen, McMillan retired on 50 coming in 51 balls and minutes with three boundaries and two sixes.

Chris Harris is no stranger to Sri Lanka, and stepped in upon the retirement of McMillan. He too played the spinners confidently. With runs coming freely off the spinners skipper Samaraweera brought in the fast bowlers.

But the Black Caps scored freely off the fast bowlers as well. 41 runs were scored between the 40th over and 45th over.

Harris retired having made 28 in 26 balls in 30 minutes with three boundaries.

Among the bowlers only skipper Thilan Samaraweera and Upul Chandana, returning to competitive cricket after injury, were impressive. Samaraweera's seven overs cost 26 runs while Chandana's 10 overs cost 43. He also picked up the wicket of Nathan Astle.


New Zealand openers Matthew Sinclair and Nathan Astle made the perfect start to their tour of Sri Lanka when they put on 119 runs for the first wicket gaining valuable match practice ahead of the first match of the Coca Cola Cup at NCC Grounds in Colombo today. At the end of the 25 overs they were 134 for two.

Sinclair, who made a brilliant hundred against Sri Lanka when the sides met last time around in Sharjah, started the innings confidently by hitting the first ball of the match for four. He timed the ball sweetly from the start and was particulary strong through the off side.

Astle, normally the aggressor, adopted a more supportive role on the other end. The openers put up the 50 run partnership in 9.3 overs in 40 minutes.

Sinclair reached his 50 by pushing fast bowler Omesh Wijesiriwardene to extra cover for a single. His half-century came in 54 deliveries in 71 minutes with eight boundaries.

In the first 15 overs the visitors scored almost six runs an over as they were 87 for none when the fielding restrictions ended. New Zealand's the reached the hundred mark in the 18th over of the day.

Sri Lanka finally broke through in the 22nd over when Kaushalya Weeraratne clean bowled Sinclair as the right handed opener tried to pull. He had scored 64 from 70 balls.

Upul Chandana replaced Weerarathne from the Tennis Court End and had immediate success when he caught and bowled Astle. He made 48 from 66 balls and hit five boundaries.

Stephan Fleming and Craig McMillan are now at the wicket.


Sri Lanka A won the toss and put New Zealand into bat in the warm up match at NCC Grounds in Colombo this morning.

This is the only warm up game the Black Caps are playing before the Coca Cola Cup, which starts on Wednesday. They arrived late Saturday night and had their first training session yesterday.

Both sides agreed this morning to play 12 players, thus allowing one extra player some valuable practice. New Zealand left out James Franklin and Grant Bradburn from their 14-man squad.

Gayan Wijekoon has been included in the Sri Lanka A side.

© CricInfo

Date-stamped : 16 Jul2001 - 14:29