T20 World Cup: Stokes and Woakes get England over the line and into semi-finals

By Sports Desk November 05, 2022

Ben Stokes and Chris Woakes held their nerve to guide England to a four-wicket win over Sri Lanka and into the T20 World Cup semi-finals.

Boasting a better net run-rate than hosts Australia in Group 1, England knew victory would be enough at the Sydney Cricket Ground on Saturday to see them progress alongside New Zealand at the expense of the reigning champions.

Matters looked bleak for Jos Buttler's team, however, when a sloppy opening seven overs bowlers allowed Sri Lanka to advance for 65-1, yet spearheaded by Mark Wood's 3-26 and Adil Rashid's 1-16 – his wicket being the dismissal of the excellent Pathum Nissanka (67) – England took seven wickets for just 76 runs for the remainder of the innings, limiting their opponents to 141-8.

England looked to be strolling to victory at 75-0 from the opening 43 deliveries, with Alex Hales and Buttler excelling in the power play before the latter succumbed to Wanindu Hasaranga.

Hales, whose 47 included eight boundaries, was caught and bowled by Hasaranga two overs later, with Harry Brook, Liam Livingstone and Moeen Ali falling in quick succession as England wobbled.

Sam Curran picked out Kasun Rajitha at fine leg to pile the pressure on, yet Stokes (42) – so many times a hero – provided the composure, chipping away to leave England needing five runs from the final over.

It was Woakes who provided the final flourish, whipping a cut away to the boundary to ensure victory with two balls to spare.

England's redemption shot

Under Eoin Morgan, England reached the semi-finals of last year's T20 World Cup, only to fall short against New Zealand, who themselves were beaten by Australia in the final.

England – who have now won each of their last eight men's T20Is against Sri Lanka – will now face the winner of Group 2 for a place in the showpiece match this time around.

Pathum reaches Sri Lanka milestone

His knock might ultimately have proved fruitless, but it saw Pathum become the 10th Sri Lanka batter to accumulate 1,000 T20I runs, while he is the second-fastest to achieve the feat in terms of innings (after Kusal Perera).

Hasaranga also had a fine match with the ball, finishing with 2-23. It means he ends the tournament with 15 wickets, one short of his tally from the 2021 edition (16), which is the highest on record in the competition's history.

Related items

  • Hayley Matthews named Wisden’s leading T20 cricketer in the world Hayley Matthews named Wisden’s leading T20 cricketer in the world

    West Indies captain Hayley Matthews has been named Wisden’s leading Twenty20 Cricketer for 2023, as she topped all and sundry, including her male counterparts.

    Alan Gardner looks at the remarkable performances of this outstanding player – a T20 World Cup champion.

    We’ve all heard the one about the globe-trotting, six-hitting West Indies all-rounder bestriding the T20 stage. But this tale comes with a twist: a first female winner in this award’s seven-year history. Hayley Matthews has long been a star of the game – aged 18, she inspired West Indies to victory in the 2016 World T20 final – but in 2023 she produced an unprecedented red-hot run of form. Between February and her final game of the year in October, on three different continents, she won eight consecutive T20I match awards. The previous best was four in a row. During that sequence, she averaged 88 with the bat, at a strike-rate of 144, and 12 with the ball.

    The pièce de résistance came at North Sydney Oval, game seven in the Matthews Supremacy. Set 213, West Indies were powered to a record chase in women’s T20Is by her buccaneering 132 from 64 balls, including 110 in boundaries. Her score, a West Indies record, was the first century in the second innings of a women’s T20I; and it came after she had been the pick of the bowlers, with 3-36 for her off-breaks. That the side on the receiving end were the world champions, playing in their own backyard, added only lustre.

    If 2023 was a banner year for the women’s game, with the inauguration of the Women’s Premier League in India, then Matthews rode the crest of the wave. She was a WPL title-winner with Mumbai Indians, the fifth-leading run-scorer in the competition, and captained Barbados Royals to victory in the Caribbean Premier League, scoring 82 from 59 and taking 2-38 in the final. She was also a high-profile pick in The Hundred and the Big Bash.

    Her feats could only sporadically lift West Indies, whom she had captained for the first time in 2022, though she credited the job for helping her, “take responsibility for my game”.

    Women's CPL 2022

    The first in her streak of match awards came against Ireland at Cape Town during the T20 World Cup, where West Indies ended a run of 15 defeats. She followed that with another all-round display, against Pakistan, though two group wins could not put her side in the semifinals. Ireland were again on the receiving end in July, as West Indies won 3–0 in St Lucia, before their tour of Australia confirmed her status as the ICC’s number one all-rounder. In five days, she smashed 99 not out, 132 and 79 – a total of 310 off 178 balls, with 43 fours and 13 sixes – and took five wickets.

    Her overall T20I record for the year read 700 runs from 14 matches at 63 (strike-rate 132) and 19 wickets at 16 (economy 6.84). Across men’s and women’s T20 – domestic and international – her tally of 1,551 runs was topped only by Jos Buttler. Unlike Matthews, though, he was not the leading wicket-taker in the format. The Caribbean had produced another game-changer.

    Article provided by the Editor of Wisden

  • Rovman Powell pushes for Sunil Narine's return to international cricket in time for T20 World Cup Rovman Powell pushes for Sunil Narine's return to international cricket in time for T20 World Cup

    Following an extraordinary display of batting prowess by Sunil Narine, scoring his maiden T20 century with 109 runs for Kolkata Knight Riders, West Indies T20 captain Rovman Powell is making a compelling case for Narine to come out of retirement and represent the West Indies in the upcoming T20 World Cup, scheduled to kick off in the Caribbean and the USA starting on June 1.

    Powell's Rajasthan Royals clinched a thrilling victory over Narine's Kolkata Knight Riders by two wickets at Eden Gardens on Tuesday, but it was Narine's exceptional century that captured attention and reignited discussions about his international comeback.

    Just days ago, Narine had been adamant about watching the T20 World Cup from home after announcing his retirement from international cricket in November 2023. However, his post-match remarks on Tuesday hinted at a potential change of heart.

    "It is what it is, but let's see what the future holds," Narine stated when asked about reconsidering his retirement decision after his stellar performance.

    Powell, determined to sway Narine's decision, disclosed his ongoing efforts to convince the seasoned cricketer to return to the West Indies squad.

    "For the last 12 months, I've been whispering in his ears, but he's blocked out everyone," Powell revealed. "I've asked Pollard, Bravo, Pooran. Hopefully, before they select the team, they can crack his code," Powell revealed.

    Powell's persistence underscores the value Narine could bring to the West Indies team, especially in a high-stakes tournament like the T20 World Cup. Narine's experience, coupled with his remarkable skills showcased in domestic leagues, makes him an enticing prospect for Powell and other team selectors.

    As Powell and his counterparts continue to advocate for Narine's return, cricket fans eagerly await Narine's final decision, which could have significant implications for the West Indies' T20 World Cup campaign. Will Narine heed Powell's call and make a dramatic comeback to international cricket? Only time will tell as the tournament approaches and team selections are finalized.

     

  • Narine’s maiden T20 hundred in vain as Jos Buttler helps Royals complete highest chase in IPL history Narine’s maiden T20 hundred in vain as Jos Buttler helps Royals complete highest chase in IPL history

    Sunil Narine’s maiden T20 hundred was in vain as Jos Buttler produced a gem of an innings to help the Rajasthan Royals defeat the Kolkata Knight Riders in Tata Indian Premier League (IPL) action at Eden Gardens in Kolkata on Tuesday.

    The Trinidadian left-hander hit 13 fours and six sixes on his way to a brilliant 109 off just 56 balls to propel KKR to 223-6 from their 20 overs after being put in to bat by the Royals.

    Angkrish Raghuvanshi and Rinku Singh provided good support for Narine with 30 and 20*, respectively.

    Pacer Avesh Khan was the best bowler on the day for Rajasthan with 2-35 from his four overs.

    Jos Buttler then produced his second hundred of the season to help the Royals pull off the highest chase in IPL history.

    The Englishman made 107* off 60 balls including nine fours and six sixes to help the Royals reach 224-8 off 20 overs.

    It was a herculean effort from Buttler who scored the last 46 runs for the Royals.

    Riyan Parag and Rovman Powell provided the most support with Buttler with 34 and 26, respectively. Most importantly, Parag’s innings lasted 14 balls and Powell’s lasted 13 balls.

    Narine completed a good all-round performance with 2-30 from his four overs with the ball.

    Full Scores: Kolkata Knight Riders 223-6 from 20 overs (Sunil Narine 109, Angkrish Raghuvanshi 30, Avesh Khan 2-35, Kuldeep Sen 2-46)

    Rajasthan Royals 224-8 off 20 overs (Jos Buttler 107*, Riyan Parag 34, Rovman Powell 26, Sunil Narine 2-30, Varun Chakravarthy 2-36, Harshit Rana 2-45).

© 2023 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.