By Srian Obeyesekere
Sri Lanka continued their pathetic run losing the final ODI to New Zealand by 6 wickets folding up for157 runs off 41.3 overs having won the toss and batted as the hosts closed on the game at 159 for 4 off 32.5 overs at Seddon Park, Hamilton for a 3-nil clean sweep.
Sri Lanka’s batting once again lacked the desired consistency and commitment with the frontline coming apart
with the exception of opening batsman Pathum Nissanka who made 57 off 64 inclusive of 8 boundaries and a six before being run out while skipper Dasun Shanaka struck 31 off 36 containing 2 sixes and an equal number of boundaries. The only other resistance came from the bat of Chamika Karunaratne who continued to put to shame the top order batsmen scori9ng 24 off 42 filled with 3 boundaries in a repeat performance when he top scored in the disastrous second ODI when Sri Lanka crumbled for 76.
Nuwanidu Fernando continued his horror run on tour falling for 2 off 9 to Matt Henry to a catch by Henry Nicholas while Kusal Mendis snapped up by Daryl Mitchell off Henry for a duck facing six deliveries again highlighted the uncertainty in his batting and the recall of Angelo Mathews who fell for an eight-ball duck giving Mitchell his second catch off Henry Shipley exposed his failure and the wisdom of having been recalled after having been shown the exit door over a year ago. Dhananjaya de Silva went for 13 off 21
with 2 boundaries while Wanindu Hasaranga de Silva too once again failed to live up to his allround prowess going for a four-ball duck snapped behind by Latham off Mitchell who claimed 3 for 32. But the bowling honours went to Matt Henry who took 3 for 14 off 10 while Shipley took 3 for 32.
New Zealand’s viuctory chase wilted at 3 for 21 after pacer Lahiru Kumara accounted for both openers. He had Chad Bowes caught behind by Mendis for 1 off 5 off his first delivery and the second over of the innings and followed it up by sending back Tom Blundell off his last delivery for 4 again a caught behind victim having faced 3 deliveries as the hosts slumped to 2 for 6 after two overs. It became 3 for 21 when Kasun Rajitha accounted for Daryl Mitchell who became Mendis’ third caught behind victim for 6 off 8. When the Lankan skipper Dasun Shanaka bowled his opposite number for 8 off 16 New Zealand had slipped to 59 for 4 after 14.5 overs as the Lankans sensed a chance of defending their 150-plus total. But Will Young, playing in his 1oth ODI manning the No.3 slot, stood up in a recovery trail of 86 off 113 balls hitting 11 boundaries as he found an able ally in henry Nicholas 44 off 52 with 5 boundaries in carrying New Zealand home in an unfinished fifth-wicket century partnership off 102 balls.
Sri Lanka 157 (41.3 Overs)
(Pathum Nissanka 57, Dasun Shanaka 31, Chamika Karunaratne 24, Dhananjaya de Silva 13,
Matt Henry 3/14, Henry Shipley 3/32, Daryl Mitchedll 3/32)
New Zealand 159/4 (32.5 Overs)
(Will Young n.o. 86, Henry Nicholas n.o. 44, Lahiru Kumara 2/39, Dasun Shanaka 1/25, Kasun