Rain ends England’s bid for ODI sweep against Sri Lanka
BRISTOL: Tom Curran followed in brother Sam’s footsteps against Sri Lanka only for rain to deny England a series clean sweep in the third and final One-day International in Bristol on Sunday.
Having won the preceding Twenty20 International series 3-0, England were on course to end the ODI campaign with a similar scoreline after dismissing Sri Lanka for a meagre 166 in 41.1 overs, with Curran taking 4-35 in his maximum 10 overs.
That followed Sam’s return of 5-48 during an eight-wicket win at The Oval — the brothers’ Surrey home ground — on Thursday that put England 2-0 up.
But a huge downpour after Sri Lanka’s innings meant the match was abandoned before England’s reply could start.
Tom Curran’s wickets represented the right-arm paceman’s first for England in six white-ball appearances. He had previously bowled 34 overs in T20s and ODIs without success.
Only Dasun Shanaka, with 48 not out, offered significant resistance with the bat.
Sri Lanka’s top order has struggled during the past fortnight, repeatedly losing wickets to the new ball.
And it was an all-too familiar story at the County Ground as they suffered another collapse to 63-5 inside 15 overs after losing the toss as Chris Woakes and David Willey made early inroads.
Woakes, the only change to the England side, struck in his second over when he had Sri Lanka captain Kusal Perera chopping into his stumps for nine.
Player-of the-series Willey took the new ball ahead of Sam Curran, despite his fellow left-arm swing bowler’s success at the Oval, and, after conceding 17 runs in his first two overs, had Aviskha Fernando lbw on review.
Dhananjaya de Silva, who made a fine 91 at The Oval, then fell for just four when a miscued hook off Woakes was caught by Rashid at fine leg — the latest example of a Sri Lanka batsman falling to the short ball.
Wanindu Hasaranga had made 20 when a pull off Tom Curran, at 26 three years older than Sam, lobbed gently to Willey at deep square leg, with Sri Lanka now 87-6.
Tom Curran completed his haul with the aid of two catches by wicket-keeper Jonny Bairstow, with Chamika Karunaratne well held when the gloveman diving to his right, before Binura Fernando edged behind.
Sri Lanka’s running between the wickets has been poor all tour and the innings ended with nearly nine overs to spare when Asitha Fernando was run out after a farcical mix-up with Shanaka.
W.I.A. Fernando lbw b Willey 14
M.D.K.J. Perera b Woakes 9
P. Nissanka c Bairstow b Willey 6
D.M. de Silva c Rashid b Woakes 4
B.O.P. Fernando c Woakes b T. Curran 18
W. Hasaranga c Willey b T. Curran 20
M.D. Shanaka not out 48
C. Karunaratne c Bairstow b T. Curran 11
B. Fernando c Bairstow b T. Curran 7
P.V.D. Chameera st Bairstow b Rashid 16
A.M. Fernando run out 0
EXTRAS (B-1, LB-1, W-11) 13
TOTAL (all out, 41.1 overs) 166
FALL OF WKTS: 1-19, 2-29, 3-33, 4-42, 5-63, 6-87, 7-116, 8-124, 9-152.
BOWLING: Woakes 10-3-28-2 (1w); Willey 7-0-36-2 (6w); S.M. Curran 6.1-1-30-0 (2w); T.K. Curran 10-0-35-4; Adil Rashid 8-0-35-1 (2w).
ENGLAND: J.J. Roy, J.M. Bairstow, J.E. Root, E.J.G. Morgan, S.W. Billings, Moeen Ali, C.R. Woakes, S.M. Curran, T.K. Curran, D.J. Willey, Adil Rashid.
RESULT: Match abandoned; England win three-match series 2-0.
UMPIRES: M.A. Gough (England) and D.J. Millns (England).
TV UMPIRE: R.A. Kettleborough (England).
MATCH REFEREE: B.C. Broad (England).
PLAYER-OF-THE-SERIES: David Willey.
FIRST MATCH: Chester le Street, England won by five wickets.
SECOND MATCH: The Oval, England won by eight wickets.
Published in Dawn, July 5th, 2021