Welcome to Wisden’s live match centre for the T20 World Cup 2021 game between West Indies and Sri Lanka on November 4. Both teams have won just one game in the Super 12 stage thus far, though the Lankans have played an extra game.
Right. That will be that from us for tonight! Do join us tomorrow as the Kiwis take on Namibia before the action shifts to Dubai, where India will be clashing swords with Scotland. Till then, this is me signing off. Goodbye, stay safe!
Before the contest began, plenty of fans were expecting (read hoping) that the experienced West Indian outfit would rewind the clock and produce a vintage display. As the match progressed, though, it became clear that the young and exuberant Sri Lankan side had the beating of the defending champions. The Islanders batted superbly, made the most of the Power Play, targeted the shorter boundary and then made merry at the death. West Indies, on the other hand, lacked the gumption for a fight and seemed to be going through the motions.
In the second innings, the defending champions endured another shaky Power Play. Gayle perished early and so did Lewis, meaning that they didn’t get the momentum they desired. Chase, too, wasn’t able to inject impetus into the innings, meaning that the burden fell on Hetmyer and Pooran. The latter was the aggressor for a large chunk of their partnership. Hetmyer, however, took over the mantle once Pooran was dismissed. In the end, the West Indian batters kept falling like nine-pins and Hetmyer had to watch the debris from the other end – so much so that even his heroics couldn’t drag the defending champions over the line.
Over 20: West Indies 169-8 – Defending champions officially eliminated
Hetmyer tried his best in the final over but just didn’t have enough support to power the defending champions across the line. The West Indies are now officially out of the T20 World Cup and that alone, considering their post-2012 record, is something novel that fans will have to be content with.
Over 19: West Indies 156-8 – Hetmyer keeps fighting
At the cost of sounding like a broken record, Hetmyer is waging a lone battle. Even if one batter had lent his support, Hetmyer could have probably made a match out of it. Nevertheless, a victory is still theoretically possible and considering the kind of character he is, he will keep believing! 34 off 6 balls!
Update: Shimron Hetmyer has completed his first fifty in T20 World Cup cricket. He has been battling all alone for the past few overs and is trying to reduce the margin of defeat as much as possible.
Over 17: West Indies 131-8 – Hasaranga knocks Bravo over
Hasaranga has been using his flight beautifully and has deceived another batter now. Bravo also looked like he wanted to swing for the fences and to be fair to him, he didn’t have much of a choice. West Indies on the brink now.
Over 15.2: West Indies 117-7 – Holder on his way back too
The West Indians are crumbling like a pack of cards now. Holder, who seemed in good touch for his short vigil, can no longer impact the game with the bat. Sri Lanka are all over the defending champions like a rash and a Sri Lankan victory seems more a matter of when rather than if right now.
Over 14.1: West Indies 107-6 – Hasaranga castles Pollard
Pollard was always going to target spin. However, even he might not be proud of the ugly slog he indulged in on the first ball of the over. West Indies are spiraling now, with Hetmyer waging a lone battle at the other end.
Over 13.1: West Indies 94-5 – Russell perishes
Russell has been in woeful form lately and that trend continues tonight too. He never seemed to come to grips with the pace of the surface and an agricultural hoick later, perishes into the wilderness. West Indies are sliding now and unless someone plays a spectacular innings, they will have to reconcile themselves with another defeat.
Over 11.1: West Indies 77-3 – Chameera scalps Pooran
Pooran, who has been the only West Indian batter to be in some sort of rhythm, departs with West Indies still needed 113 runs. The onus has now shifted onto Hetmyer and Russell, who has just walked out to the centre. This could be the game, folks!
Update: Wanindu Hasaranga is finally into the attack. He is bowling with the leg side fence being the longer side. By the way, Hasaranga has picked 9 wickets in five innings against WI and averages a staggering 8.55.
Over 10: West Indies 72-3 – Hetmyer struggling
Hetmyer has not gotten into his groove so far and that has begun hampering the West Indies now. Pooran has also tried quite a few shots but hasn’t executed them as well. The West Indies need a few boundaries and they need it pretty quickly. They now need 118 off 60 balls!
Over 8: West Indies 59-3 – West Indies losing a bit of momentum
Shimron Hetmyer has not gotten going so far and that is transferring a bit of pressure onto Pooran. Overall, Hetmyer strikes at around 127 in the middle overs, with Pooran’s corresponding tally being around 135. West Indies need both to step on the accelerator quickly, especially with four potential overs of Hasaranga remaining.
Over 5.3: West Indies 47-3 – Bhanuka Rajapaksa, you cannot do that!
Oh my! Just as it seemed that the defending champions were building momentum, Rajapaksa produces a moment of sheer brilliance to snap the partnership. He flies to his left at short mid wicket and sends Chase packing. Sri Lanka are into the middle order now. And, West Indies’ designated anchor will no longer play a role with the bat.
Over 4: West Indies 34-2 – Pooran fires an ominous warning shot
Pooran was probably the best West Indian batter on display against Bangladesh. And, it seems he has carried that form into tonight’s fixture too. He has stroked the ball wonderfully so far and seems to have the right kind of intent as well. He could be onto something, you know!
Stat Alert! Chase and Pooran have vital roles to play today. However, both don’t fare too well in the Power Play. While Chase strikes at 102.75, Pooran’s strike rate dwindles to 114.41 during the field restrictions.
Over 2: West Indies 10-2 – Binura has two in the over; Lewis departs
Lewis has been troubled all tournament by length deliveries and it gets the better of him tonight as well. With Lewis back in the shed, West Indies have a herculean task scaling down this total. Could this be the beginning of the end for the defending champions? Or do they have one final fight left in them?
Update: Change in the batting order for the West Indies. Pooran walks out at No.3 and this could be the clearest indication of how West Indies want to approach this run-chase.
Over 1.2: West Indies 1-1 – Gayle bites the dust
Gayle had the right intent but fell short in his execution as he toe ended his lofted shot straight to mid off. This is a huge wicket in the context of the game and it would be interesting to see how West Indies react. Usually, they’ve tended to drop anchor after the fall of an early wicket. They might not have that luxury today, though.
Over 1: West Indies 1-0 – Brilliant start for Sri Lanka
West Indies have been guilty of starting off sedately in most games. For a major chunk, they have had Lendl Simmons at the crease – someone who takes time to get his eye in. Today, they have Gayle and Lewis. Could either be inclined to attack in the next couple of overs?
Update: Gayle and Lewis are opening the batting for the defending champions. The former will take strike to Theekshana first up!
Sri Lanka began their innings in effervescent fashion with Kusal Perera taking a liking to the West Indian bowlers. Nissanka bided his time at the start but grew in stature through the middle phases, meaning that the defending champions were challenged throughout. Asalanka, though, was the star of the show as he produced another scintillating knock. He played the field to perfection, utilized the short boundary to one side and picked his moments superbly. Shanaka provided the finishing kick towards the end and helped the Islanders post what seems a slightly above par total on this pitch.
West Indies, on the other hand, would be disappointed with how they fared. They lacked intensity throughout their innings and their bowling plans and the subsequent execution also left a lot to be desired. However, this huge total could free up the defending champions a touch. They only have one option now and that is to attack from the outset. It could either flick a switch in their ranks or it could be the precursor of another capitulation.
Either way, plenty of intrigue awaits in the second innings. Do join us in a bit for the run-chase!
Over 20: Sri Lanka 189-3 – West Indies need 190 to win
Sri Lanka stuttered a little in the final over but did enough to get up to 189. They have placed a massive mountain in front of the West Indies and with a certain Wanindu Hasaranga in their ranks, the Islanders might fancy their chances.
Over 19: Sri Lanka 180-3 – Shanaka the key for Sri Lanka
Throughout his T20 career, Shanaka has struck at 114.92 at the death. Today, however, he is scoring at a strike rate of 200. He could be the key in ensuring that Sri Lanka get past the 190-run mark.
Over 18.4: Sri Lanka 179-3 – Russell gets rid of Asalanka
Asalanka finally walks back to the pavilion but he does so having provided Sri Lanka an excellent platform. Unless something drastic happens, they look set to reach 185 (at least). Russell is proving his worth at the death today.
Over 18: Sri Lanka 170-2 – West Indies under the pump
Usually, Dwayne Bravo’s performance at the death is an indicator of West Indies’ fortunes. Today, he has been pummeled for 44 runs in 4 overs, with the 18th over alone costing 19 runs. Can Sri Lanka get up to 190 from here?
Over 17: Sri Lanka 153-2 – Shanaka gets in on the fun
Shanaka’s promotion raised quite a few eyebrows. But he has, so far, repaid the faith shown in him. He is now batting on 14 off 5 balls and if he can continue injecting momentum, Sri Lanka could even get up to 185-190, which could be a huge score on this surface.
Update: Charith Asalanka has reached fifty and has again reinforced why Mickey Arthur thinks he can be Sri Lanka’s batting pillar for years to come. He might not be satisfied with today’s work though, considering he could be the difference between a 170-run total and a 185-run target.
Over 15.3: Sri Lanka 133-2 – Bravo sends Nissanka back
Bravo has, over the years, developed a knack of picking crucial wickets at the death. Today, he has accounted for Nissanka but considering how the latter was batting, it could be a massive moment in the game. If Bravo can keep a lid on the run-scoring, West Indies might fancy their chances of chasing down Sri Lanka’s total.
Over 15: Sri Lanka 132-1 – Asalanka and Nissanka grinding West Indies into submission
Both batters are opening up their shoulders and have brought out the innovative strokes too. West Indies seem to have no answers for this pair and if they continue in a similar vein, they might comfortably breach the 180-run barrier.
Over 13: Sri Lanka 112-1 – Sri Lanka generating momentum
The Islanders have been helped by wayward West Indian bowling. But they have been good enough to capitalize on those loose deliveries. They now find themselves in a comfortable position and would hope to get to 180 which could be a very good total on this surface. Perhaps just above par too, provided dew does not come in.
Over 11: Sri Lanka 91-1 – Nissanka rattles along
Nissanka has been shouldering Sri Lanka’s batting burden today. He has been severe on the spinners and has taken whatever opportunities have presented themselves. He usually strikes at 126.78 in the middle overs but is rattling along nicely today.
Over 9: Sri Lanka 77-1 – West Indies leaking runs
In essence, this is a do-or-die encounter for the West Indies. So far, though, they’ve not shown the requisite intensity and have been lackluster with their bowling plans and execution. If they aren’t careful, it could be quite detrimental, especially with Asalanka and Nissanka in full flow.
Over 7: Sri Lanka 61-1 – Sri Lanka make merry against Akeal
Akeal was probably brought on because of Asalanka and Nissanka’s indifferent records against left-arm spin. However, they have already shown that they don’t intend to retreat into their shells. Before the 7th over began, Asalanka was striking at around 110, whereas Nissanka’s strike rate hovered around the 92-run mark.
Over 5.2: Sri Lanka 42-1 – Russell breaks through
Just as it seemed that Sri Lanka were getting away, Russell pops up to break the game open. He induces a leading edge that he snaffles up beautifully on his follow through. That is also the first sign of the pitch being a little sluggish. A much-needed wicket for the West Indies, though, considering the damage Perera is capable of.
Over 4: Sri Lanka 29-0 – Sri Lanka keep things ticking
The Islanders haven’t been able to produce a blitz so far. However, they have done enough to keep things moving. They have been helped by a couple of edges along the way but they now have a solid foundation they can build upon. Perera, in particular, will look to target the rest of the Power Play.
Over 2: Sri Lanka 14-0 – Perera outlines his intentions
Perera has blown more cold than hot this tournament. Today, though, he seems intent on batting positively and has already fetched himself a couple of boundaries. If Sri Lanka are to get to an above-par total, a lot rests on how long Perera bats.
Over 1: Sri Lanka 6-0 – Tidy start for both sides
Chase was handed the new ball because of a favourable match-up against both batters. Nissanka strikes at 125 against off spin, whereas Perera’s strike rate drops down to 116.72. Chase bowled well too. And, perhaps, was unlucky that the outside edge (off Perera) didn’t go to hand.
Update: The national anthems are done and dusted. The West Indians seem relaxed enough while Sri Lanka are trying to enjoy their final match at this year’s T20 World Cup. Kusal Perera and Pathum Nissanka walk out to the centre. Roston Chase will open the bowling for the defending champions.
West Indies win the toss and elect to bowl first; defending champions unchanged
Pollard sticks to the usual trend and opts to bowl first. There was quite a bit of dew yesterday. India, though didn’t allow it to become too much of a problem. This is also the first time the West Indians are bowling first at this T20 World Cup. For Sri Lanka, this is a chance to put up decent runs on the board. Their batters have been effervescent in patches but are yet to stitch together a coherent performance.
West Indies XI: Evin Lewis, Chris Gayle, Roston Chase, Shimron Hetmyer, Kieron Pollard (C), Andre Russell, Nicholas Pooran, Dwayne Bravo, Jason Holder, Akeal Hosein, Ravi Rampaul
Sri Lanka XI: Kusal Perera, Pathum Nissanka, Charith Asalanka, Avishka Fernando, Bhanuka Rajapaksa, Wanindu Hasaranga, Dasun Shanaka, Chamika Karunaratne, Dushmantha Chameera, Binura Fernando, Maheesh Theekshana
Can Sri Lanka buck the recent trend against West Indies?
Sri Lanka were one of the few teams to tour the Caribbean in March 2021. However, most of those games turned pear-shaped for the Islanders. Remember, this was the series that involved an Akila Dananjaya hat-trick and Kieron Pollard smashing six sixes in an over – all in the same game. Back then, the West Indians had just begun flexing their batting muscles. Now, though, there are serious concerns if they can rewind the clock one final time. History says Sri Lanka are doomed but history hasn’t been anybody’s friend this T20 World Cup. Quite a few streaks and recent records have been overturned!
West Indies’ hopes hanging by the thinnest of threads
Prior to the tournament, the West Indies were several experts’ favourites to qualify from Group 1. Not just because they were defending champions. But also because their array of match-winners is perhaps unrivalled throughout the T20 World Cup landscape. Somehow, though, they’ve not stumbled upon a match-winning formula yet, meaning that a scrappy victory against Bangladesh is all that they have to show so far. More worryingly, there have been question marks raised over their approach – something that seemed unimaginable before the tournament but has become a reality as the competition has progressed.
From that perspective, they might relish the option of the handbrake being forcefully taken away from them. They know that two massive victories and a bit of help from England is the only way they can qualify. Even if that happens, they can still miss out. But if they are to get through to the final four, they need to keep their end of the bargain, at the very least.
Can Sri Lanka play the role of party-poopers?
Sri Lanka have probably been the most impressive outfit at the T20 World Cup, in terms of the expectations people had and how they have surpassed them. For large swathes, they have looked a part at the event and had it not been for bouts of inexperience, they might even have been competing with the West Indies for a semi-final berth. Now, though, they might have to reconcile themselves with impending elimination. However, there is a catch – in that it could relieve them of pressure and allow the Islanders to be the most uninhibited version of themselves.
T20 World Cup 2021 West Indies v Sri Lanka: Preview
West Indies were dismissed for just 55 in the first game, against England, and failed to get going in their next clash against South Africa as well. They managed to eke out a narrow three-run win against Bangladesh last time out, though.
Sri Lanka, on the other hand, are already eliminated from the competition and will play their last league game on Thursday. They will enter the game on the back of three successive defeats.
T20 World Cup 2021 WI v SL: Team news and injury updates
West Indies got Jason Holder and Roston Chase in the last game, over Lendl Simmons and Hayden Walsh. After a win last time around, they could go into the match unchanged.
T20 World Cup 2021 West Indies squad: Full team list for WI
Sri Lanka saw the return of Maheesh Theekshana from injury in the last game against England, and the Asia side could go in unchanged.
T20 World Cup 2021 Sri Lanka squad: Full team list for SL
T20 World Cup 2021 West Indies v Sri Lanka: Where to watch live
India: Star Sports Network; Disney+ Hotstar
UK & Ireland: Sky Sports Cricket, Sky Sports Main Event, Sky Sports Mix; Sky Sports app, www.skysports.com
USA: Willow.tv: Willow, Willow Xtra
Sri Lanka: Star Sports, Siyatha TV
The complete list of broadcast (TV and live streaming) options for the tournament can be found here.