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Gunathilaka's controversial dismissal mars Windies win

Reuters/Antigua
Filed on March 11, 2021
Jason Mohammed (left) and Darren Bravo celebrate victory over Sri Lanka. — AFP

The second game of the three-match series is scheduled for Friday

Sri Lanka opener Danushka Gunathilaka was controversially dismissed for obstructing the field in the first one-day international against West Indies in Antigua on Wednesday as the hosts wrapped up an eight-wicket victory.

Gunathilaka had made a fluent 55 when he defended a Kieron Pollard delivery and moved a few steps forward before sending back batting partner Pathum Nissanka and returning to the crease himself.

Sensing a run-out opportunity, Pollard sprinted towards the ball but retreating Gunathilaka’s heel diverted it out of reach of the West Indies captain, who appealed furiously.

Under law 37 of the game, a batsman can be given out if he “wilfully attempts to obstruct or distract” the fielding side but video replays suggested Gunathilaka did not intentionally knock the ball away from Pollard.

On-field umpire Joel Wilson referred the decision to third umpire, who adjudged the batsman out.

Tom Moody, who was appointed Sri Lanka’s director of cricket last month, took to Twitter to voice his disappointment.

“’Wilful obstruction’ no way was that wilful ... #shocker,” tweeted the former Australia player.

Former West Indies skipper Darren Sammy shared that view.

“Don’t think that was wilful at all. I wouldn’t appeal...” tweeted the 37-year-old.

The dismissal was followed by a couple of run-outs as Sri Lanka lost their rhythm and were all out for 232. Hosts West Indies completed the chase with three overs to spare.

The second game of the three-match series is scheduled for Friday at the same venue.

Scoreboard

Sri Lanka

D. Gunathilaka obstructing the field 55

D. Karunaratne c and b Pollard 52

P. Nissanka run out 8

A. Mathews run out 5

D. Chandimal c sub (Walsh) b Allen 12

A. Bandara c Hosein b Holder 50

K. Mendis c Allen b Mohammed 9

W. Hasaranga c Holder b Mohammed 3

D. Chameera c Hope b Holder 8

L. Sandakan not out 16

N. Pradeep c Shepherd b Joseph 1

Extras (lb5, w8) 13

Total (all out, 49 overs) 232

Fall of wickets: 1-105 (Karunaratne), 2-112 (Gunathilaka), 3-119 (Mathews), 4-126 (Nissanka), 5-151 (Chandimal), 6-183 (Mendis), 7-189 (Hasaranga), 8-207 (Chameera), 9-224 (Bandara), 10-232 (Pradeep)

Bowling: A. Joseph 10-0-49-1 (2w), J. Holder 10-1-39-2 (2w), A. Hosein 8-0-44-0 (2w), R. Shepherd 5-0-30-0, J. Mohammed 4-1-12-2, K. Pollard 5-0-15-1 (2w), F. Allen 7-0-38-1

West Indies

E. Lewis b Chameera 65

S. Hope b Chameera 110

D. Bravo not out 37

J. Mohammed not out 13

Extras (lb3, nb3, w5) 11

Total (2 wkts, 47 overs) 236

Fall of wickets: 1-143 (Lewis), 2-215 (Hope)

Did not bat: N. Pooran, K. Pollard, J. Holder, F. Allen, R. Shepherd. A. Joseph, A. Hosein

Bowling: N. Pradeep 8-1-46-0 (1w), D. Chameera 10-0-50-2 (1nb), K. Mendis 3-0-21-0 (1w), W. Hasaranga 10-1-26-0 (1nb), D. Gunathilaka 5-0-25-0, L. Sandakan 10-0-57-0 (1w, 1nb), A. Bandara 1-0-8-0

Result: West Indies won by eight wickets

Toss: Sri Lanka

Umpires: Joel Wilson and Gregory Brathwaite (WIS)

Match Referee: Richie Richardson (WIS)





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