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Vaas delivers a masterclass

April 13, 2007
Sri Lanka ended New Zealand's unbeaten run at the World Cup with a six-wicket victory in a Super Eights match in Grenada on Thursday.

The Lankans won with 29 balls to spare and ended a streak of nine one-day wins by New Zealand.

New Zealand, who won the toss and chose to bat, struggled early in their innings before Scott Styris's undefeated 111 steadied them to a total of 219 for seven.

In reply, Sanath Jayasuriya scored 64 and Kumar Sangakkara 69 not out as Sri Lanka cruised to 222 for four.

New Zealand captain Stephen Fleming elected to bat, but his decision backfired almost immediately when he fell leg before wicket to the fifth ball of Chaminda Vaas's opening over shuffling half-forward.

Ross Taylor, recalled at number three after missing the last four games with a hamstring strain followed in Vaas's second over, brilliantly caught for a duck one-handed by wicketkeeper Kumar Sangakarra diving to his right.

Peter Fulton became Vaas's third victim when he was caught at square-leg by Chamara Silva as New Zealand were left reeling at 71 for 3 in the 20th over.

Vaas kept the batsmen in a tight leash throughout, finishing with 3 for 33 in his 9 overs, and was quite deservedly named the man of the match.

Off-spinner Muttiah Muralitharan took three for 32 to join his injured colleague Lasith Malinga and Australia's Glenn McGrath at the top of the World Cup wicket-takers with 15.

Photograph: Getty Images

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