Sri Lanka win over Zimbabwe

Zimbabwe lost the battle against Sri Lanka after their openers provided an impressive century stand in their World Cup Group A day-night match here at the Pallekele International Stadium on Thursday.Chasing a huge total of 328, Brendan Taylor and Regis Chakabva accepted Sri Lanka’s challenge by posting a courageous 116 runs in 19.5 overs for Zimbabwean opening stand.But as soon the magician off-break bowler, Muttiah Muralitharan, ended the partnership, bowling Chakabva out, Zimbabwean wickets were falling like nine pins and the whole team was out for 188, losing the match by 139 runs. Taylor hit a dashing 80 off 72 balls with nine fours and a six while Chakabva gave him valuable support scoring a patient 35 from 61 balls. No other batsman could make any significant contribution.Off-spinner Tillekaratne Dilshan, giving the best allround performance, captured four wickets for only four runs, including two on successive balls, while Muralitharan bagged three and Angelo Mathews grabbed two wickets.Earlier, openers Dilshan and Upul Tharanga hit centuries during a record World Cup opening stand to lift Sri Lanka to 327-6 against hapless Zimbabwe.

This was a rare incident of both openers of a team scoring hundreds in a World Cup match.

Dilshan scored 144 for his ninth one-day hundred, while left-hander Tharanga notched a career-best 133 for his tenth, making Zimbabwe captain Elton Chigumbura pay for his decision to field after winning the toss on a docile pitch.

They put on 282, just failing to beat the record opening stand of 286 in all 50-over cricket. Tharanga also featured in that partnership with Sanath Jayasuriya against England at Leeds in 2006.

This was also the fourth highest partnership for any wicket in ODI history.

It all ended when Tharanga was caught at cover by Chigumbura in Christopher Mpofu's 45th over, after a brilliant 141-ball knock, spiced by 17 hits to the fence.

Dilshan fell in the next over, caught off spinner Prosper Utseya off a miscued drive.

The 34-year-old opener smashed one six and 16 boundaries during his attractive 131-ball knock.

Mpofu finished with 4-64 as Sri Lanka lost four more wickets for just 45 runs late in the innings.

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I'm journalist in Pakistan,And working in this field about 20 years.