BLACKCAPS-Sri Lanka match abandoned

Rain spoiled the one-off Twenty20 International between the BLACKCAPS and Sri Lanka with just 16 overs being bowled at Pallekele International Cricket Stadium today.

Several days of heavy rain and fresh downpours this evening prevented the opening fixture of the tour getting underway on time and after two lengthy breaks in play the match was eventually called off by the match officials.

"I feel sorry for the groundsman,” said BLACKCAPS captain Ross Taylor.  “The wicket has been under prepared and under cover for three days.”

“It was tough out there and I think a no-result was a clear reflection on the match.

“In saying that, we were still in with a sniff with 70 runs under our belt and that shows what type or wicket it was,” Taylor added.

New Zealand were in early trouble after losing the toss and being put into bat on a pitch that had been under cover for a number of days but managed to scrap their way through to 74 for seven in their allotted 14 overs.

Fast bowler Nuwan Kulasekara dismissed Tom Latham (four) and McCullum (one) while Shaminda Eranga removed Rob Nicol (one) to reduce the hosts to 15 for three.

The seamer-friendly conditions ensured that wickets kept tumbling with Thisara Perera getting rid of James Franklin (two) and Ross Taylor (four) to have the BLACKCAPS reeling at 24 for five after 8.4 overs before an hour long rain delay offering the visitors some respite. 

When play resumed at 9.45pm local time the match had been reduced to 14 overs per side.

BJ Watling was caught down the leg side shortly after break for eight while Andrew Ellis belted a quick 16 before he was caught on the boundary. 

Tim Southee’s approach of going-for-broke paid off as he smacked four boundaries off the penultimate over and went on to get his team top score of 21 not out.   Jacob Oram was the other unbeaten batsmen on nine.

The BLACKCAPS made a decent start with the ball, only conceding six runs in their two overs before rain again halted play at 10.45pm but this time they were unable to resume the play.

The teams now face each other in a five-match ODI series starting at the same venue on Thursday.


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