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Pathan brothers lead India to win
February 10, 2009 22:34 IST
Last Updated: February 10, 2009 22:45 IST
World champions India relied on a late blitzkrieg by Pathan brothers Yusuf and Irfan to snatch a thrilling three-wicket victory over Sri Lanka [Images] in the one-off Twenty20 [Images] International in Colombo on Tuesday night.
Chasing a stiff target of 172, Irfan (33 not out) and Yusuf (22 not out) scored 59 runs from 25 balls in the tense final moments to steer India home in a pulsating floodlit contest at the Premadasa Stadium.
Suresh Raina (35) and Yuvraj Singh [Images] (32) were the other notable performers for the visitors as India capped their brief tour of Sri Lanka with a stunning victory in the Twenty20 game in addition to their 4-1 ODI series triumph.
Earlier, captain Tillekaratne Dilshan led from the front, smashing his maiden half century to guide Sri Lanka to a competitive 171 for four.
Electing to bat at the Premadasa Stadium here, Sri Lanka made a rollicking start with openers Sanath Jayasuriya [Images] and Tillakeratne Dilshan scoring more than 10 runs per over in the first five overs.
But once Jayasuriya was out for 33 in the sixth over off Irfan Pathan [Images], Sri Lankan wickets fell at regular intervals and some intelligent bowling by the Indians saw the home team slowing down the pace to just cross the 170-run mark.
Captain Dilshan (61) survived a close call in the very first ball of the innings off Zaheer Khan [Images] and five deliveries later he was dropped by Irfan when on zero.
Ishant Sharma [Images] was shown scant respect by Jayasuriya who hit the young fast bowler for one four and two huge sixes to take 18 runs in the fourth over.
The young Delhi [Images] fast bowler conceded 26 runs from his first two overs and was replaced by Irfan.
Sri Lanka were on the top after reaching their fifty in the fifth over with Jayasuriya being the main contributor before the Indians applied the brakes.
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