Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo
Opening batsman Avishka Fernando smashed a fantastic 82 to lead Sri Lanka to a comfortable seven wicket win over Bangladesh in Colombo.
Sri Lanka’s victory not only saw them take an unassailable 2-0 lead in the series, but also marked their first series win at home in three-and-a-half years.
Opting to bat first, Bangladesh got off to a poor start as opener Soumya Sarkar was trapped lbw off the bowling of Nuwan Pradeep for 11 runs.
Stand-in captain Tamim Iqbal mustered 19 runs before he was clean bowled by Isuru Udana.
Akila Dananjaya joined the party as he took out Mohammad Mithun and Mahmudullah in quick succession, while Sabbir Rahman was run out for 11.
With Mosaddek Hossain being caught behind off the bowling of Udana for 13, Bangladesh found themselves in all sorts of trouble at 117/6.
However, Mushfiqur Rahim and Mehidy Hasan Miraz came to the rescue as they forged an 84-run partnership before Mehidy was removed by Pradeep for 43.
Taijul Islam was run out for three runs shortly after, but with Rahim going on to score an unbeaten 98, which came off 110 balls and included six boundaries and a six, Bangladesh finished on 238/8.
Pradeep, Udana and Dananjaya picked up two wickets apiece.
Chasing 239 to win, Sri Lanka got off to a great start as Fernando and captain Dimuth Karunaratne amassed a 71-run partnership before Karunaratne was clean bowled by Mehidy for 15.
Fernando and Kusal Perera added 58 runs to the score before Fernando was caught by Tamim at mid-on off the bowling of Mustafizur Rahman for 82, which came off 75 balls and included nine boundaries and two sixes.
Kusal went on to score 30 runs before he became Mustafizur’s second victim.
However, that was to be Bangladesh’s last taste of success as Angelo Mathews and Kusal Mendis finished things off with an unbeaten 96-run partnership, during which Mathews brought up his half-century.
Mathews ended up making 52, which came off 57 balls and included seven boundaries, while Mendis remained undefeated on 41, which came off 74 deliveries and included four boundaries.
Mustafizur was the most successful bowler with two wickets, while Mehidy claimed one.
Fernando was named Man of the Match.