Bulawayo : , July 2 (IANS) A brilliant four-wicket haul by Maheesh Theekshana and an unbeaten hundred from Pathum Nissanka propelled Sri Lanka to a spot in the 2023 Men’s ODI World Cup with a comprehensive nine-wicket win over Zimbabwe in the Super Six stage of the qualifying tournament at Queen’s Sports Club on Sunday.
In the morning, after electing to bowl first, Sri Lanka maintained their clean slate of not conceding a single total in excess of 200 in the ongoing tournament. Off-spinner Theekshana shined with 4-25 while left-arm pacer Dilshan Madushanka took 3-15 in his fiery opening spell to bowl out Zimbabwe for just 165.
Chasing a modest 166, Nissanka led the way by hitting 14 fours in his unbeaten 101 off 102 balls and got some support from Dimuth Karunaratne (30) and Kusal Mendis (25 not out) to get Sri Lanka over the line with nine wickets in hand and 101 balls to spare.
Apart from the win consolidating their place at the top of the Super Six table, Sri Lanka, the 1996 World Cup winner, have ensured that they’ll remain among the top two sides at the end of the stage, thus sealing their qualification for the ODI World Cup to be played in India from October 5 to November 19.
Zimbabwe 165 in 32.2 overs (Sean Williams 56, Sikandar Raza 31; Maheesh Theekshana 4-25, Dilshan Madushanka 3-15) lost to Sri Lanka 169/1 in 33.1 overs (Pathum Nissanka 101 not out, Dimuth Karunaratne 30; Richard Ngarava 1-35) by nine wickets