Kusal Perera’s blistering fifty gives Sri Lanka a 1-0 lead in the two-match T20 International (T20I) series. Sri Lanka eased to a comfortable 6-wicket win in the first T20I at the R Premadasa Stadium, Colombo. Perera started off a bit slow, but once he hit that first boundary, there was no looking back. He brought up his fifty off just 31 deliveries and Sri Lanka never looked in any sort of trouble through out their chase. The opening wicket stand of 65 in 6.5 overs between Perera and skipper Upul Tharanga set the tone for Sri Lanka. Sri Lanka then lost Dilshan Munaweera and a direct hit from Sabbir Rahman saw Asela Gunaratne walk back for 17. Full Cricket Scorecard: Bangladesh vs Sri Lanka 1st T20I at Colombo (RPS)
However, Sri Lanka were comfortably placed at 120 for 3 in the 16th over. Perera continued to attack and soon got the required run-rate to about a run-a-ball. With 7 wickets in hand, Bangladesh never really had a chance from there. But their captain Mashrafe Mortaza led from the front with the ball, picking up the first two wickets to fall. Barring a run-out after that, Bangladesh bowlers never really looked like getting a breakthrough. By the time they got rid of Perera for 77 it was too late as Sri Lanka needed just nine more off 11 deliveries. Full Cricket Updates, Bangladesh vs Sri Lanka, 1st T20I at Colombo
Bangladesh ended their innings at 155 for 6, thanks to contributions from Mosaddek Hossain and Mahmudulah, who added 57 for the sixth wicket. Mosaddek remained unbeaten on 34, while Mahmudulah was dismissed for 31. As far as the Sri Lankan bowlers are concerned, Lasith Malinga picked up 2 wickets, while Vikum Sanjaya, Gunaratne and Prasanna picked up a wicket apiece.
Earlier, Bangladesh had won the toss and elected to bat first. At the toss, Mortaza announced that this two-match T20I series against Sri Lanka will be his last. He also posted a thank you message to his fans and players. The next T20I at the same venue on April 6, will be his last T20I. Mortaza will however lead the side in the upcoming Champions Trophy.
Bangladesh 155 for 6 in 20 overs (Mosaddek Hossain 34*, Mahmudullah 31; Lasith Malinga 2 for 38, Seekkuge Prasanna 1 for 19 ) lost to Sri Lanka 158 for 4 in 18.5 overs (Kusal Perera 77, Upul Tharanga 24; Taskin Ahmed 1 for 33, Mashrafe Mortaza 2 for 32 by 6 wickets.