|Scorecard:||Sri Lanka v West Indies|
|Player:||JE Taylor, DJ Bravo, CH Gayle, ST Jayasuriya, TM Dilshan, M Muralitharan, BAW Mendis, AD Mathews|
|Event:||ICC World Twenty20 2009|
DateLine: 19th June 2009
Not on many occasions does Chris Gayle stay till the end and still see his team on the losing side. Firday though was one of those days as the brilliance for Sri Lanka, both with the bat and the ball, made sure Gayle and company fell short in their chase to reach the final.
First Tillekratne Dilshan continued his brilliant run in the tournament and almost single-handedly took his side to a more than competitive total. Then in the very first over of the West Indian batting, Angelo Mathews sent back three batsmen, all for ducks. Courtesy the duo, Sri Lanka cruised past a hapless West Indies by 57 runs.
Chasing 159 to win, the West Indies got off to a horror start, losing Xavier Marshall, Lendl Simmons and their in-form man Dwayne Bravo in the first over bowled by Mathews. All the three were bowled and fell without troubling the scorers.
Then Shivnarine Chanderpaul and Gayle added 42 runs before Ajantha Mendis got the better of Chanderpaul, finding him plumb in front of his wickets.
Gayle kept things moving from one end though wickets continued to tumble from the other. Ramnaresh Sarwan was the next casualty, falling to the rising run-rate and the guile of Muttiah Muralitharan.
The skipper ran out of partners as the Windies batting collapsed like a pack of cards. Gayle did not find any company and irresponsible batting from most of the recognized batsmen paralysed the Caribbean cause.
Earlier, having elected to field first after winning the toss, the West Indian bowlers gave their side a good start keeping Sri Lankan openers in check. In fact after the first four overs, Sanath Jayasuriya's strike rate was a meagre 40-odd.
But as has been the case, Dilshan again came to the team's rescue and started going hammer and tongs after Jerome Taylor in the bowlers second over. The right-hander hit the bowler for a boundary and a six in his last couple of deliveries to announce his intentions. Then Bravo was hit for three boundaries in his first over and Sri Lanka were back in the game after the slow start.
Jayasuriya (24 off 37 balls) though looked totally out of sorts on the other end. After the end of eight overs, the swashbuckling opener had faced 29 deliveries, 18 of which were dots. Finally the struggle was over when he went for another one of the unconventional shots and found Taylor at short fine-leg off Bravo's bowling.
The game from there on changed for a brief while. Two more wickets that of Kumar Sangakkara (0) and Mahela Jayawardene (2) made sure West Indies were truly in command.
But on the other end, Dilshan stood tall and when the time came, started tearing the West Indian attack. Chamara Silva (11 off 12 balls) and he went berserk after the bowling and in the seventeenth over, Bravo was hit for 18 runs which included a hatrick of boundaries from Dilshan's willow.
Finally courtesy some great shots by Matthews (12 off 4 balls) in the last over bowled by Gayle and tremendous batting by Dilshan (96 off 57 balls) propelled Lanka to a more than competitive total, considering Sri Lanka's prowess in the bowling department.