World T20 cricket: Sri Lanka v Zimbabwe as it happened

Ajantha Mendis takes six wickets for eight runs as Sri Lanka crush Zimbabwe by 82 runs in the World Twenty20's opening match.

18 September 2012 Last updated at 18:56

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As it happened

  1. 1843: 

    Which brings me to a conclusion. The 2012 World T20 is under way, with Sri Lanka showing early signs that they will be a real force on their home turf. Three weeks of cricketing roulette is under way, with India, Australia, Afghanistan and Ireland due into the casino on Wednesday. Sam Sheringham will be your croupier. Bye for now.

  2. 1839: 

    Of course, we'll have full live text commentary on both of those games, leaving me only one more thing to plug: keep an eye out for Alex Stewart's column on the England Test squad, which will be live on the BBC Sport website on Wednesday morning.

  3. 1837: 

    Tomorrow will also see the first action in England's group, when the might of India take on a plucky Afghanistan side. England, remember, make their tournament bow on Friday when they meet the Afghans.


    Ex-Australia paceman Craig McDermott, now Ireland bowling coach: "We're here to win. Australia will be nervous. Everybody will expect them (Australia) to win so it's going to put them under the pump. I've worked very hard with these (Irish) boys and got on very well with them."

  5. 1834: 

    So that was the first match of the World T20 done and dusted, with perhaps the only surprise being Sri Lanka's huge margin of victory. We could, however, have a shock on our hands tomorrow, when a confident Ireland side take on Australia.


    Mathew Lowson on Twitter: "Why do I get the feeling that Sri Lanka might do rather well in this tournament?"


    Sri Lanka captain Mahela Jayawardene: I'm quite happy with the effort, we got a big score then bowled well. It was good to see the way everyone contributed with the bat, then the spinners did the job."


    Zimbabwe captain Brendan Taylor: "It's a tough pill to swallow today, we're a better side than that. Credit goes to Sri Lanka, they showed why they are one of the favourites, but we have to bounce back strongly."

    Dirk Nannes, BBC Test Match Special

    "What a display we've seen from Ajantha Mendis. It was tough to watch, the Zimbabwe batsmen had no clue. Normally you see a batsman from a Test country have an idea of how to go about batting against someone you can't read, but they were thrown to the wolves."


    Howard Horner on Twitter: "Malinga ruined the Mendis clean sweep!"

  11. 1826: 

    Just to reiterate, Ajantha Mendis has broken his own record for the best figures in a T20 international. His previous best was 6-16 against Australia last year, but this 6-8 will take some beating. Remember, in T20, a bowler can only bowl 24 deliveries. Today's he's averaged a wicket one in every four.

    Russel Arnold, BBC Test Match Special

    "The mystery with Ajantha Mendis is when he gets the ball to skid through. He's not a big turner of the ball but when it skids it causes the batsmen problems."

  13. 17.3 overs: 
    SRI LANKA WIN BY 82 RUNS- Mpofu c sub (Chandimal) b Malinga (Zim 100 all out)

    Of all the sensational cricket I've seen today, this is by far and away the most exciting. I have never, in all my time watching this great game, seen a seven. Brian Vitori backs off to hit Lasith Malinga through the covers, then, when the throw comes in, it runs away for four overthrows. Vitori is credited with the seven, the significance of which is lost when Christopher Mpofu pops the next delivery to mid off to seal Zimbabwe's fate. An 82-run win for the hosts to kick-off the tournament - whichever way you look at it, that's a hammering.


    Richard Haines on Twitter: "I'd be gutted if I was a Sri Lanka bowler and my name wasn't Mendis, meant I couldn't take a wicket!"

  15. 16.5 overs: 
    WICKET- Cremer b J Mendis 17 (Zim 93-9)

    You humble text commentator is struggling to keep up with this Mendis assault on the Zimbabwe batsmen. This time it's Jeevan Mendis who goes through the defence of Graeme Cremer to pick up his third wicket. All nine to fall have gone to the Mendis boys.

  16. 15.4 overs: 
    THAT'S A RECORD- Jarvis lbw A Mendis 0 (Zim 87-8)

    It just had to happen. Kyle Jarvis goes back to one that raps him on the back pad to be plumb lbw. With that, Ajantha Mendis becomes the first man to take a six-wicket haul in a World T20 match, beating the 5-6 taken by Pakistan's Umar Gul, as well as beating his own record figures of 6-16 in any T20 international. He ends his four overs with figures of 6-8, including two maidens. Take a bow son.

  17. 15.1 overs: 
    FIVE WICKET HAUL- Utseya c Jayawardene b A Mendis 1 (Zim 87-7)

    Ajantha Mendis looks like taking a wicket with every delivery here, and he becomes only the second man in World T20 history to take a five-wicket haul when he entices Prosper Utseya to edge to Mahela Jayawardene at slip. Five balls left to become the first man to take six wickets in the World T20....

  18. 15 overs: 
    Zim 87-6

    This match is fizzling out now, with Zimbabwe really focused on survival rather than chasing that required rate that is pushing towards 20. Seven come from Jeevan's over, including a couple of wides.

  19. 14 overs: 
    WICKET- Chigumbura b A Mendis 19 (Zim 80-6)

    I'm sorry, Elton, I'm really, truly sorry. When Sri Lanka decide to confuse us by having a Mendis at each end, Chigumbura looks to cut Ajantha, but is deceived by a googly that takes his off stump. I guess that's why they call it the blues.

    Dirk Nannes, BBC Test Match Special

    "It's so interesting to watch the different standards around the world. Cremer has not picked one Mendis delivery so far. It's so stark the difference."

  21. 13 overs: 
    Zim 75-5

    Allez Elton! While his mates have played the Mendis's with all the certainty of men trying to hit a grenade with a toothbrush, Chigumbura gets down on one knee to swipe Jeevan Mendis over cow corner for six. I think Elton is on a fast-track to my favourite cricketers' list.

    BBC Radio 5 live's Christopher Jones in Hambantota

    "Jeevan Mendis putting up a pretty strong case for man-of-the-match with a crucial knock of 43 followed by two wickets in an over. Kumar Sangakkara also having a decent day out there, with a couple of smart stumpings to go with his runs. The locals in excellent spirits in the standing areas even if this opening match is drifting towards anti-climax."

  23. 12 overs: 
    Zim 66-5

    Elton Chigumbura has stood at the other end while most of the carnage has taken place. "There's not enough sportsmen called Elton," says a voice behind me. Elton again watches on as new man Graeme Cremer gets a thick edge to third man for four, with a similar shot bringing a single. When Elton gets down to face the music, he ends the over with a other single on the off side. Some pretty glum faces as the camera pans to the Zimbabwe dug out. They are getting a shellacking.

  24. 10.5 overs: 
    WICKET- Waller lbw J Mendis 0 (Zim 58-5)

    Malcolm Waller, who sounds like he perhaps should be a school caretaker, would maybe have done better if he was batting with a broom handle. He survives the same number of balls as catches he dropped - two - going back to a googly to be trapped plumb lbw. All in all, a pretty bad day for Malcolm.

  25. 10.3 overs: 
    WICKET- Ervine st Sangakkara b J Mendis 10 (Zim 58-4)

    To confuse matters, the other Mendis, Jeevan, is given the opportunity to bowl his leg-breaks. Zimbabwe are obviously pretty distressed at the thought of facing another Mendis, with the left-handed Ervine aiming a waft at a googly. He's barely in the same post code, lifting his foot as he swings, with Kumar Sangakkara doing the rest.

  26. 10 overs: 
    Zim 57-3

    Mercifully for Zimbabwe, Ajantha Mendis is withdrawn from the attack, perhaps with a sore back as he's seen doing some stretches on the outfield. The pace of Thisara Perera is his replacement, with Zimbabwe finally managing to land a counter-punch as Craig Ervine standing tall in the crease to hoik miles over long on for six. Such is the quality/surprise of that blow, fireworks are let off from the top of the stand. Seems a bit over the top, but each to their own.


    The Hippo via text on 81111: "Bad Guys XI. Hmmm. Easy. Salman Butt (capt), Chris Gayle, KP, Jesse Ryder, Hansie Cronje, Freddie Flintoff, Andrew Symonds, Ian Botham, Mohammed Asif, Mitchell Johnson, Shane Warne. I know there's no recognized keeper. But they wouldn't care."

  28. 9 overs: 
    Zim 48-3

    At the moment, this game has more a Test-match feel than that of a T20. With Mendis running through their top order, Zimbabwe are in a perpetual state of consolidation, but manage five runs from Mathews' over.

    BBC Radio 5 live's Christopher Jones in Hambantota

    "Fireworks go off from all four corners of the ground as Ajantha Mendis picks up his third wicket. A spirited start from Zimbabwe has been ruined by his spell, and it will now take something remarkable to prevent the hosts from making a winning start to the tournament."

  30. 8 overs: 
    APPEAL - NOT OUT- Zim 43-3

    The Zimbabwe batsmen look as confused as a man buying lingerie for his wife. New man Craig Ervine slips trying to sweep his first ball and could have been either lbw or stumped, but appeals for both are turned down. With that Mendis has produced something rarer than a teetotal darts player: A T20 wicket maiden.

    Dirk Nannes, BBC Test Match Special

    "Amazing return for Mendis. He's a great player and he's come back in such emphatic fashion. Credit to him. You look at the Zimbabwe heads and they are down. Hopefully they can put up a bit of a fight from here. Everyone in the seating areas are on their feet, they are excited about what they are seeing."

  32. 7.2 overs: 
    WICKET- Masakadza b A Mendis 20 (Zim 43-3)

    Zimbabwe really don't know how to play Ajantha Mendis here. Masakadza plays a horrible heave in the direction of cow corner, but can only get an inside edge onto his stumps.


    Matt Johns on Twitter: "Cook for the Nice Guys XI - never seen him fired up and angry."

  34. 7 overs: 
    Zim 43-2

    I tend to agree with Russel Arnold, you can't help but think that Zimbabwe are fighting a losing battle now. The African side look to do some consolidating as Angelo Mathews comes into the attack, with only four runs, including a wide, coming from the over.

    Russel Arnold, BBC Test Match Special

    "Mendis has firmly put the pressure on the Zimbabweans with those wickets in his first over. Whatever hope the Zimbabweans had has been dashed."


    Petts Wood on Twitter: "Nasser Hussain makes a great Mr Burns."

    (see third over of Zimbabwe's innings)

  37. 6 overs: 
    Zim 39-2

    You don't often see a short leg in T20 cricket, but that's what we have as Elton Chigumbura faces up to the hat-trick ball. He survives, then gets off the mark with a couple from the next ball.

  38. 5.4 overs: 
    WICKET- Taylor st Sangakkara b A Mendis 0 (Zim 37-2)

    More sensational stuff from Mendis, who is now on a hat-trick. He rips one past the outside edge of Brendan Taylor, who slightly overbalances as he searches for the ball. With the batsman's toe hovering in the air, Kumar Sangakkara has the bails off in a flash and, after plenty of replays, the third umpire decides he has to go.

    Russel Arnold, BBC Test Match Special

    "Zimbabwe would have had a look at Mendis before today but it's very important for Sri Lanka that he finds form. They will need him when they play the bigger teams. His strength is the one that skids through and that delivery hit less than halfway up the stumps. He doesn't give the batsman any chance when he hurries one through."

  40. 5.3 overs: 
    WICKET- Sibanda b A Mendis 11 (Zim 37-1)

    If you were to look up "bamboozled" in the dictionary, you might see the definition "Sibanda b Ajantha Mendis 11". As Sri Lanka turn to spin for the first time, Sibanda gropes forward to the man of 1,000 variations, somehow missing one that takes out his middle stump. Absolutely flummoxed.

  41. 5 overs: 
    Zim 36-0

    More good stuff from Zimbabwe, who are hustling between the wickets and looking to give any loose balls the kitchen sink. In between swinging at thin air, Sibanda gets a thick edge over point for four, a boundary that is greeted with silence by the partisan home crowd.


    Marcus, on a crowded bus to Abingdon, TMS inbox: "Thinking about the Bad Guy XI taking to the field, you'd need some robust umpiring in the middle: who else but Mike Gatting's nemesis Shakoor Rana, who enjoyed a heated debate between the wicket, and Murali's mate Darrell Hair, who no-balled the spinner as he thought the Sri Lankan was a chucker. Tasty."

  43. 4 overs: 
    Zim 28-0

    Masakadza is not messing around now, clubbing Malinga through the on side for four, then cleverly rotating the strike. Malinga, the third highest wicket-taker at the 2010 World T20, takes his frustration out on Sibanda, who ducks a bouncer then must be relieved to take a single, with Masakadza finishing the over by belting over mid off for another boundary. Good start by Zimbabwe.


    Akhi Sharma on Twitter: "So good to see Zimbabwe playing cricket again right at the top level."

    Hlayiseka Ngobeni on Twitter: "How about 'Dil-scoops Trophy' if the hosts win?"

  45. 3 overs: 
    Zim 16-0

    With Malinga looking like Sideshow Bob, I'm wondering what other cricketers could be compared to characters from The Simpsons. James Tredwell has a look of Homer Simpson. Masakadza finally gets up and running by clubbing Kulasekara for four down the ground, then has to scramble to make his ground when Mahela Jayawardene's throw just misses the stumps at the non-striker's end.


    Mick in Tunbridge Wells, TMS inbox: "For the Nice Guys XI, surely Rahul Dravid must be an absolute shoo-in!"

  47. 2 overs: 
    Zim 8-0

    One huge problem Zimbabwe have to deal with is the bowling of Lasith Malinga, whose toe-crushers make him perhaps the most devastating T20 bowler in the world. Malinga, with his Sideshow Bob hair, is getting some movement, but a short one hits Masakadza's thigh pad and runs for four leg byes. Hamilton is struggling to get bat on, though, and is yet to score after seven deliveries.

  48. 1 over: 
    APPEAL - NOT OUT- Zim 3-0

    Kulasekara is getting some movement into these right-handers, appealing for lbw when Sibanda looks to play a Mal Loye-style sweep. Only three from the over, but if Zimbabwe want to take heart from history, they could do worse than remember 2007, when they defeated Australia. Admittedly, that was a lot smaller chase.

  49. 1659: 

    Also, I can't help but notice that the Bad Guy XI is getting more nominations than the Nice Guy XI. Daniel Vettori won the ICC's Spirit of Cricket award at the weekend, so he must be in with a shout. Players are back out, Zimbabwe openers are Vusi Sibanda and Hamilton Masakadza, while Nuwan Kulasekara has the new ball.

  50. 1656: 

    With all the talk of Kevin Pietersen being left out of England's squad to tour India, the likes of Nick Compton might be feeling that his call-up has been a little overlooked. "So tell us about Compton," I hear both of you cry. I can do better than that, and point you in the direction of Caroline Chapman's chat with the Somerset man.


    BBC Radio 5 live's Christopher Jones in Hambantota: "Jeevan Mendis has batted Sri Lanka towards a score that looks pretty insurmountable. The hosts were faltering on 82-3, but the partnership of 94 off 49 balls with Kumar Sangakkara has changed the momentum completely. Zimbabwe will need the likes of captain Brendan Taylor to do something very special against Sri Lanka's varied attack to pull off an upset."


    Mason on Twitter:‏ "Lets be honest. Zimbabwe have far too much to do, if it were 90 runs less they may have had a chance."

    Brad Mitchell on Twitter: "Andre Nel, Herschelle Gibbs and Steve Waugh for the Bad Guy XI."


    Zimbabwe leg-spinner Graeme Cremer: "I think we bowled all right, but we leaked a few too many in the field. The ball snaked a bit under the lights, but we need to lift that for the next game. I think we'll go hard at their seamers early on and hopefully we can put their bowlers under pressure."

    Dirk Nannes, BBC Test Match Special

    "It was a special performance from Sangakkara and Mendis. They were really entertaining to watch. Prior to their partnership there weren't many boundaries and the disappointing part was the way Zimbabwe crumbled, especially their fielding which fell away quite markedly. But who knows? This is a similar situation to my first game for the Netherlands against England at Lord's when we managed to win in 2009."

  55. 20 overs: 
    SL 182-4

    Thisara Perera is the man that comes out for the final two deliveries, but needs only one ball to get in on the act, heaving Mpofu high over the leg side for a six that I'm told carried 86 metres. He misses the last delivery, but Sri Lanka's 182-4 will take some getting. Mendis finishes unbeaten on 43 from 30 deliveries.

  56. 19.4 overs: 
    WICKET- Sangakkara run out 43 (SL 175-3)

    It's Mpofu to bowl the final over, with Sangakkara stepping across his stumps and whipping high over square leg for six. This is a pretty large pitch, so with this ball travelling 15 yards over the fence, it's a huge hit. From the next ball, Sangakkara tries to take a two that isn't really on, and is run out by a distance.

    Russel Arnold, BBC Test Match Special

    "This performance will do Sri Lanka the world of good. They've got through the first hurdle and now they have momentum and belief. Zimbabwe struggled to get early wickets and the start is so important in a Twenty20 match. It's so difficult to come back once you get behind. Batting first is always key - getting runs on the board."

  58. 19 overs: 
    SL 167-3

    Zimbabwe are falling apart here, with Sri Lanka somehow picking up five without hitting the ball off the wicket. When Mendis looks to paddle Kyle Jarvis, the ball only hits his pad, but Sri Lanka look to run a single anyway. Jarvis throws at the stumps, but is miles wide, with the ball heading to the fine leg boundary. Jarvis, on his knees, beats the turf in frustration, throwing a tantrum like a toddler that can't have chocolate. After Sangakkara flays a boundary through the off side, yet another overthrow is given away, with the Zimbabwe players now getting visibly frustrated with each other. A good stop at square leg by Craig Ervine shows that they haven't entirely forgotten how to field, though.


    Bibhash Dash on Twitter: "Shahid would skipper a Bad Guy XI, but only if he doesn't announce his umpteenth retirement by matchday."

  60. 18 overs: 
    SL 150-3

    Brian Vitori is recalled to the attack, but he's little more than medium pace, allowing this left-handed to pair to walk down the track at every delivery. Vitori manages to keep a decent length, but he's let down by his fielders, first as Sri Lanka manage to get a couple down the ground when only a single looked on, then when a poor throw gives away on overthrow. The coup de grace comes when Malcolm Waller (who else?) fumbles to allow another couple to be stolen. 54 have come from the last five overs.


    Simon Heap on Twitter: "I must express my anger at the uncool plain six graphic failing to convey the soaring thrill of watching the red cherry soar."

  62. 17 overs: 
    SL 139-3

    Mendis is swinging like a revolving door here, charging to take two in the deep on the leg side, with a single then bringing up the fifty partnership from 29 balls. More charging from Mendis sees him get an inside edge past diving wicketkeeper Brendan Taylor for four, with a single taking him to 35 from only 22 balls. At the end of the over, he's flat out on his front, lifting himself up with his arms to stretch his back. I tried that once, ended up needing a month off work.


    Scott Hunt on Twitter: "Contenders for Bad Guy XI - Gayle, Pietersen, Broad, Afridi. Shahid would certainly skipper a bad guy XI."

  64. 16 overs: 
    SL 129-3

    This partnership could take the game away from Zimbabwe, but Christopher Mpofu does well to bowl a full length in the face of the Mendis-Sangakkara onslaught. He can't get through the over without a bad ball, though, and when he drop short, Sangakkara angles over third man for four. Four over to go, get your hard hats on.

    Russel Arnold, BBC Test Match Special

    "You need to have batsmen to complement each other. Twenty overs is a long time and you don't want two batsmen going hard at the ball all the time. This is set up for Mendis for the last five overs to have a go and build on this platform."

  66. 15 overs: 
    SL 120-3

    15 overs in, we have our first six of the tournament (and the first opportunity to show off our new six graphic), as Elton Chigumbura strays on to Mendis's pads and is whipped over square leg for a maximum. Chigumbura is struggling here, and some more leg-side stuff is flicked to fine leg for four. After some tight stuff in the middle overs, Zimbabwe are back up against it.

  67. 14 overs: 
    SL 107-3

    Perhaps any Sri Lankan concern is misplaced, as left-hander Mendis first slog-sweeps Cremer for four, then repeats the dose with a back-foot drive. The hosts are back on the front foot now, scoring at well over seven an over. Also, just thinking about my Nice Guy XI, would they play against a Bad Guy XI? There must be a few candidates for that.


    Andy in London, via text: "I think if West Indies win the headline will be 'Gayle force wins!'"

    Tweet us via #bbccricket or text us on 81111 (UK mobiles).

  69. 13 overs: 
    SL 96-3

    I wonder if there's any concern surrounding the Sri Lanka bench yet. Those wickets have certainly pegged them back, and Sangakkara and new man Jeevan Mendis are looking to consolidate here. They get some luck, though, courtesy of a horrible piece of fielding on the straight boundary. Firstly, the ball trickles through Hamilton Masakadza's legs, then evades Brian Vitori on the way to the fence. It's so bad, umpire Ian Gould is laughing as he signals four.

  70. 12 overs: 
    SL 86-3

    Jayawardene might have been undone by the stiff breeze that is sweeping across this ground. He could have been thinking that Waller's throw was going to hold up, but, the one-bounce return was good from the man who has dropped two catches today. Only one boundary in the last five overs.

  71. 11.3 overs: 
    WICKET- Jayawardene run out 13 (SL 82-3)

    This is sloppy from the Sri Lanka captain. After Sangakkara cuts, Jayawardene turns for two and is running towards the non-striker's end, but some hesitation means Malcolm Waller's throw is always looking likely to win the race. The replays confirm that Jayawardene is toast, and Zimbabwe are recovering well here.


    BBC Radio 5 live's Christopher Jones in Hambantota: "Dilshan was looking like he was ready to cut loose, but there's no respite for Zimbabwe as Kumar Sangakkara joins his captain at the crease, with Sri Lanka no doubt looking for a score of 150 plus. Their fans, who now swamp the grassy banks which take up nearly half of this ground, cheering every run with relish."

  73. 11 overs: 
    SL 80-2

    How disheartening must it be to get rid of Dilshan, only to see ICC cricketer of the year Kumar Sangakkara stride to the crease. He was previously training to be a lawyer, Sangakkara, but that doesn't stop him from being one of the nicest blokes in sport. In fact, he might even be captain of my Nice Guy XI. Just four come from Utseya's final over. He finishes with tidy fugures of 0-25.

    Dirk Nannes, BBC Test Match Special

    "It's going to be interesting to see what happens now. Having someone of the quality of Dilshan go out and then someone of the quality of Sangakkara come in is so disheartening for teams of Zimbabwe's stature. He's such a good player - he'd make my top five in the world."

  75. 9.4 overs: 
    WICKET- Dilshan c Taylor b Cremer 39 (SL 75-2)

    It's all happening in this Cremer over, and Zimbabwe will certainly feel like they deserve this Dilshan wicket. After Jayawardene is given out lbw, but reprieved on replay when it is discovered that Cremer bowled a no ball, Dilshan aims a cut and gets a feather through to wicketkeeper Brendan Taylor. Dilshan lingers, perhaps in disbelief, perhaps knowing that I have put the mockers on him. Sorry, TD.

  76. 9 overs: 
    SL 70-1

    The reverse sweep isn't a shot you'd associate with Mahela Jayawardene, but he executes with perfection to take Utseya for four. A single brings Dilshan on strike, with the Sri Lanka opener twice using good placement to pick up a couple of twos. A single takes him to 37 from 25 balls - if he has a good tournament then you'd fancy Sri Lanka to go well. I reckon he'd probably open the batting with Chris Gayle in my T20 World XI.

  77. 8 overs: 
    SL 59-1

    Zimbabwe turn to leg-spin in the shape of Graeme Cremer, not to be confused with American golfer Paula Creamer. He starts well, with Dilshan and new man Mahela Jayawardene restricted to four singles.

  78. 6.3 overs: 
    WICKET- Munaweera run out 17 (SL 54-1)

    This is comedy genius. Munaweera, who's struggled on his international debut, looks to sweep Utseya and sets off for a single. Dilshan sends him back, though, with Munaweera dropping his bat as he turns. When the throw comes in, Munaweera tries to reach his ground by leaping, triple-jump style to get his foot behind the line. He's short, though, and has to be on his way.

  79. 6 overs: 

    Oh dear, Malcom Waller is really having a shocker out there. When Munaweera heaves new bowler Christopher Mpofu into the leg side, Waller, who looks like he'd be more suited to a boy band than international cricket, makes a hash of the chance at deep square leg. He dives forward, but again the ball slips through his hands. To add insult to Zimbabwe's injury, Tillakaratne Dilshan gets the Dillscoop out for the first time, flicking over his head for four then drives down the ground for another boundary. Sri Lanka flying now.


    Rob, via text: "I'm fed up with people blaming the ECB for the Pietersen situation. He thought he was bigger than the team, tried to bully them into giving him what he wanted, annoyed his team-mates and acted like a petulant child. Until he properly apologises he cannot be allowed back or we'll see cricket go the way of football. Egos, money and selfishness."

    Tweet us via #bbccricket or text us on 81111 (UK mobiles).

  81. 5 overs: 
    SL 38-0

    We see spin for the first time in the tournament, in the shape of Prosper Utseya. He drops short to allow Dilshan to force through the off side for four, then gets his line wrong to be swept for a single and give away two wides. A leg bye and another Dilshan single take Sri Lanka to 38. It's not blistering, but the conditions suggest this won't be a run-fest.


    Zuby in Glagow, via text: "Pakistan favourites without a doubt. Ajmal, Gul, Afridi, Hafeez and Tanvir are clearly the most potent bowling attack in these conditions."

    Tweet us via #bbccricket or text us on 81111 (UK mobiles).

  83. 4 overs: 
    SL 29-0

    Sri Lanka are having some luck here, with Dilshan fortunate when a top edge falls beyond the reach of retreating wicketkeeper Brendan Taylor. It's tough for the batsmen, though, with these pace bowlers finding more swing than we're used to seeing in Sri Lanka. But, when Vitori gets it wrong, Dilshan needs no second invitation to hammer through the covers for four.

    BBC 5 live's Christopher Jones in Hambantota

    "Anything over 140 will be very difficult to chase. Not a sell-out by any means, but there is a lively contingent of Sri Lanka fans, many in excitable mood on the grassy banks."


    Dave in Chester, TMS inbox: "Glad about the KP decision, I honestly hope he never plays for England again. Strange to see Taylor left out though, how do you go from next cab off the rank to also ran in the space of a month? Doesn't fit with the policy of consistency we've seen from the ECB over the last decade."

  86. 3 overs: 

    The umpires are wearing garish, Fiorentina-style purple shirts that make them look like something you might get in the Christmas Quality Street. After Ian Gould is pressed into action to signal wide against Jarvis, Munaweera hammers the right-armer back over his head. Jarvis continues to pitch the ball up, though, with Munaweera skying it towards mid on. Malcolm Waller runs round to try and hang on as the ball drops like a huge hail stone, but it slips through his hands to become the first dropped catch of the tournament.

    Dirk Nannes, BBC Test Match Special

    "Sri Lanka are not really giving anything away. No team has gained the upper hand yet. You don't want to see a stalemate for the first six overs, it's time for Sri Lanka to start playing a few shots and having a go."

  88. 2 overs: 
    SL 10-0

    Brian Vitori, a left-arm seamer, shares the new ball, with the formidable figure of Tillakaratne Dilshan standing 22 yards away. Vitori does well with two full deliveries to start, but gives Dilshan too much width and is flayed through the off side for four. After a wide and a Dilshan single, Munaweera again struggles as the ball swings back into his pads. Debutant not looking too comfortable here.


    Lester Pester on Twitter: "Come on Zim!!! Please just don't get destroyed. An upset would be lovely!"

    Lee Diamond on Twitter: "Think Zimbabwe will win this opener."

  90. 1 over: 
    SL 4-0

    The fourth ICC World Twenty20 is under way with a boundary, as Munaweera bunts his first delivery in international cricket, a Kyle Jarvis full toss, through the covers for four. Jarvis finds some swing after that, though, and five dots follow. Zimbabwe will be happy with that.


    Lee Dixon on Twitter: "Fancy Sri Lanka to go all the way here, squad looks strong...."

  92. 1506: 

    There's lots of empty seats in the stadium as Sri Lanka openers Tillakaratne Dilshan and debutant Dilshan Munaweera make their way to the middle. Some excellent camera work takes us right into the middle of the Zimbabwe huddle, where Brendan Taylor tells his players: "It's a big day for us, so give it everything." Paceman Kyle Jarvis has the ball in hand.

    Dirk Nannes, BBC Test Match Special

    "Yesterday we heard that they had sold 20,000 tickets but there's no evidence of that yet. There's a very strong breeze and that can be a bit unsettling at times, but international cricketers should be used to that. I think these guys will just be happy that the tournament is finally under way after all the warm-up games."


    Nas Hussain on Twitter: "Zimbabwe to pull off an upset!"

  95. 1502: 

    The Sri Lanka national anthem has just rocketed into my all-time top-five favourite national anthems. Still not as good as France, but it's up there.


    Jonathan Dixon on Twitter: "Feel for Taylor being dropped, don't think it'll be long till he's back. Happy Morgan is back and gutted KP situation isnt sorted."


    Mark, TMS inbox: "I'm going to stick my neck out and go for Windies to win the whole shebang - 'Tropical GayleStorm' being the back page headline."


    Sri Lanka: Mahela Jayawardene (capt), Angelo Mathews, Kumar Sangakkara, Tillakaratne Dilshan, Lahiru Thirimanne, Dilshan Munaweera, Jeevan Mendis, Thisara Perera, Lasith Malinga, Nuwan Kulasekara, Ajantha Mendis.

    Zimbabwe: Brendan Taylor (capt), Vusi Sibanda, Hamilton Masakadza, Malcolm, Waller, Elton Chigumbura, Craig Ervine, Graeme Cremer, Kyle Jarvis, Chris Mpofu, Brian Vitori, Prosper Utseya.

  99. 1457: 

    The two teams, Sri Lanka all in blue, Zimbabwe decked out in red, have made their way on to the pitch, each player holding the hand of a mascot. With their respective flags behind them, they line up for the national anthems.

  100. 1456: 

    BBC Radio 5 live's Christopher Jones in Hambantota: "Been down to look at the conditions at the Mahinda Rajapaksa Stadium here in Hambantota. There's a fair bit of grass on the wicket which could make the opening overs a little lively, especially with it being night-time already. Sri Lanka are widely tipped to be in the mix come the final stages, and a good win today would almost certainly guarantee a place in the Super Eights. Crowd is trickling in, many taking their seats on the grass banks, but the stadium is in the middle of absolutely nowhere, so fans will have had a decent trek to get here."

  101. 1455: 

    And before we get started, I'll give you a reminder on how the World T20 works. The 12 teams are split into four groups of three, with the top two from each group progressing to the Super Eight stage. The draw for that phase has already been made, with the countries expected to progress divided into two groups. From there, the top two in each group go on to the semi-finals.

  102. 1552: 

    England batsman Eoin Morgan: "The group stages can be really tricky, so long as we can get through the group then I think we'll do well."

    Jonathan Agnew, BBC Test Match Special

    On Kevin Pietersen: "The England and Wales Cricket Board knows the risk it is taking by omitting such a proven match-winner and the pressure it is piling on the young batsmen who are going to India, but it still decided it was not prepared to take Pietersen."

  104. 1446: 

    And, of course, I said we could talk about Kevin, and we can. Send us your thoughts on the England squad to tour India this winter. It's no surprise that KP isn't in that party, but should he be? For my money, James Taylor is unlucky to miss out, while the selection of five pacers suggests Alastair Cook's men could pick three in their XI. That could be good news for Samit, but not for Monty.

  105. 1442: 

    Disappointingly, Sri Lanka's 18-year-old spinner Akila Dananjaya misses out, as does Ray Price. To say I'm gutted would be an understatement. Still plenty of spin options on both sides, though, while Sri Lanka's batting looks strong. Full team to follow.


    Noreen Shihab: "I'm missing ALL the games because of work. Any good excuses you can help me with?"

    Tweet us via #bbccricket or text us on 81111 (UK mobiles).


    Brendan Taylor: "It's always nice to know what you will be chasing. We've prepared really well and we're excited to be here. It's a massive day for us, we don't have a hell of a lot to lose, so hopefully we can surprise someone."

    Mahela Jayawardene: "It looks a good wicket, runs on the board is always a positive thing."


    Brendan Taylor calls correctly and invites Mahela Jayawardene's boys to have a bat under the lights of Hambantota.

  109. 1432: 

    Then, when you've digested that, get in touch with your predictions, predictions that don't have to be confined to who might win. Who will get the most runs? Most wickets? Who will implode and who are the dark horses? What colour will Chris Gayle's shades be? Will Craig Kieswetter manage to catch anything? Will an England player tweet about anything other than the video games they play? Tweet us using the hashtag #bbccricket, text 81111 (put your name on these) or email, with 'For Stephan Shemilt' in the subject line.

  110. 1428: 

    As for Zimbabwe, their team is full of recognisable names, with Taylor undoubtedly the main threat with the bat. For me though, the most entertainment will come from veteran left-arm spinner Ray Price, one of my all-time favourite sledgers. For more on them, and the rest of the teams in Sri Lanka, check out our team-by-team guide.

  111. 1425: 

    But, for now, all eyes will be on the Mahinda Rajapaksa International Cricket Stadium in Hambantota, where hosts Sri Lanka take on Brendan Taylor's Zimbabwe. Remember when Sri Lanka shocked the world by blasting their way to the 1996 World Cup with Jayasuriya and Kaluwitharana at the top of the order? This time, they've picked an 18-year-old schoolboy who had never played a game of professional cricket in his life. in their squad.

  112. 1423: 

    However, as I'm sure you're well aware, England recovered from that orange humbling to win the tournament a year later in the Caribbean. This time the defending champions return with a new skipper and a youthful line-up, one that does not include a certain K Pietersen. More on him later.

  113. 1421: 

    We begin our 27-match odyssey with a bang. OK, so Sri Lanka v Zimbabwe might not be the most glamorous way to get this fourth ICC World Twenty20 under way, but they probably thought that when England played the Netherlands in 2009. And look what happened there....

  114. 1419: 

    But, let's be honest, bar Pietersen's brilliance at Headingley and the heart-stopping CB 40 final at Lord's on Saturday, cricket hasn't really done its bit to make an impact on this most glorious of sporting summers. Can the World Twenty20 make a late charge towards those end-of-year montages?

  115. 1417: 

    Yep, as the golden summer of sport gives way to Kevin Pietersen's winter of discontent, we begin three weeks of switch-hits, Dillscoops, mystery spin, magic catching and maybe, just maybe, some more England success.

  116. 1415: 

    If Test matches are poker and one-dayers are blackjack, then the Sri Lankan casinos of Colombo, Hambantota and Pallekelle are set for three weeks of high-stakes cricketing roulette.

Live Scores - Sri Lanka v Zimbabwe


  • Sri Lanka beat Zimbabwe by 82 runs
  • Sri Lanka: 182-4 (20.0 overs)
  • Zimbabwe: 100 (17.3 overs)
  • Venue: Hambantota

Zimbabwe Innings

All out
View full scorecard
H Masakadza b A Mendis 20
Sibanda b A Mendis 11
Taylor st Sangakkara b A Mendis 0
Chigumbura b A Mendis 19
C Ervine st Sangakkara b J Mendis 10
Waller lbw b J Mendis 0
Cremer b J Mendis 17
Utseya c M Jayawardene b A Mendis 1
Jarvis lbw b A Mendis 0
Vitori not out 7
Mpofu c Sub b Malinga 0
Extras 6w 9lb 15
Total all out 100

Women's World Twenty20 2012

Captains Jodie Fields (Australia), Shashikala Siriwardene (Sri Lanka), Sana Mir (Pakistan), Merissa Aguilleira (West Indies) and Charlotte Edwards (England) with the trophy

Results, reports and scorecards from the third Women's World Twenty20 tournament