Jayasuriya hit a masterful 99 to set up Sri Lanka’s 121-run victory over India in the day-night final of the Coca-Cola Cup triangular one-day cricket series at the R Premadasa Stadium in Colombo on August 5, 2001. The Sri Lanka captain Sanath Jayasuriya struck 11 fours in his 102-ball knock as his team posted 295-5, which forced Indian batsmen to take risks early in the innings.
India, hoping for the first win in eight finals since April 1999, yet again failed to cross the last hurdle when they were shot out for 174. None of the Indians could match the brilliant efforts from Man of the Series Jayasuriya and Man of the Match Russel Arnold. He involved in everything, a breezy half-century (52 off 45 balls), effected run out (HK Badani), chipping up one wicket (1 for 21).
Sanath Jayasuriya led the way with his aggressive batting, while Arnold hammered a 45-ball 52 and then accounted for a runout, took two catches and a wicket to shatter India’s hopes. The one-sided match revived memories of the last final between the two teams at Sharjah last year when Jayasuriya smashed a career-best 189 in Sri Lanka’s score of 299 for five.
India, who were then shot out for their lowest total (54) in one-dayers, this time avoided that humiliation, but not the defeat by a big margin. Jayasuriya missed his hundred this time, but his team again had enough runs on the board to put pressure on India. Indian Dashing batsman Virender Sehwag, who scored a 69-ball century against New Zealand three days earlier, failed to beat an Arnold throw from point to the non-striker’s end while going for a risky single.
Skipper Sourav Ganguly cut Dilhara Fernando’s next delivery and caught at point by Arnold to leave his team reeling at 5-2. Rahul Dravid plays one shot too many and was bowled off an inside-edge to give Fernando his second wicket, India tottering at 61-3. Venkat Laxman dropped on 2 by Chaminda Vaas at mid-off off Kumar Dharmasena, failed to capitalize on the chance, and added nine more runs before being caught by Mahela Jayawardene at mid-wicket.
Indian batsmen lower down faced a tall order after their team had been reduced to 100-6. In contrast, the Sri Lankan batting was consistent right through. Jayasuriya put on 71 with fellow-opener Avishka Gunawardene (34) and 104 for the third wicket with Jayawardene (57) to remind India that all was not well with their bowling.
Russell Arnold and Romesh Kaluwitharana (31 not out off 32 balls) continued the good work as Sri Lanka plundered 45 runs from their last five over’s. A six-man Indian attack looked too ordinary to contain runs on an easy-paced wicket after Sri Lanka had won the toss and elected to bat.
Indian Captain Saurav Ganguly, once warned for running on to the danger area on his follow-through, and off-spinner Harbhajan Singh (2-29) bowled impressively, but their efforts were not good enough to restore balance. Sanath Jayasuriya, who suffered cramps in the 27th over when on 84, needed a runner (Marvan Atapattu) for nearly eight over’s before giving a simple catch to Ganguly at mid-wicket.
He gave one chance on 71 when he lofted left-arm spinner Yuvraj Singh, but Zaheer Khan misjudged the skier at long-on. Jayasuriya and Gunawardene put Sri Lanka on course for a big total with their solid batting in the opening over’s, much to the delight of a capacity crowd on a hot and humid day.
Gunawardene, who looked in fine touch, overshadowed his captain with a flurry of boundaries, contributing 30 in his team’s first fifty off 46 balls. The openers severely punished left-arm fast bowlers Zaheer and Ashish Nehra, who often erred in line and length. Indian batting folded in a brittle glass as everyone failed.
A worried Ganguly soon removed Zaheer from the firing line after the bowler had conceded 30 in his opening four-over spell. Harbhajan struck in his second over, trapping Gunawardene leg- before, but the fireworks did not stop as Jayasuriya received valuable support from Jayawardene. Indeed this was a remarkable performance by Sri Lanka to beat India in the final and lifted the Coca-Cola Cup Triangular Series.
In one of the earlier matches of the Coca-Cola Cup, India’s batting collapsed for the third match in a row as New Zealand defended a modest total of 200 to pull off a 67-run win at the R Premadasa Stadium in Colombo on July 26, 2001. The match was reduced to 48 over’s after a delayed start.
That was because of dew on the pitch, but neither side could use their full allocation as New Zealand were bowled out in the 47th over and India was dismissed for 133 in the 40th. India had failed to overhaul 211 in their first game against the Kiwis and fell six runs short of Sri Lanka’s 221 on July 22.
New Zealand now had four points from as many games while India had none from three matches. Hosts Sri Lanka was sitting comfortably on top of the standings after three straight victories. Ganguly captured three wickets with his slow seamers to help restrict New Zealand.
India, who won the toss, dismissed opener, Nathan Astle, early but the Kiwis recovered. All-rounder Dion Nash, top-scorer with 42, and Daniel Vettori, Jacob Oram hits a six against India who scored 19, shared in a crucial 43- run stand for the eighth wicket to help New Zealand reach 200. Thus, in the Match Laxman scored a timely unbeaten 87 to guide India Ito a crucial seven-wicket victory over Sri Lanka.
His fourth half-century, coming off 127 balls with 10 fours, helped his team surpass Sri Lanka’s total of 183 with 26 balls to spare. India’s first win in four matches kept alive their chances of making it to the August 5, final. It was the home team’s first defeat in four games.
India had earlier contained Sri Lanka to a small total despite a 103-run opening stand between skipper Jayasuriya (57) and Kaluwitharana (46). Comfortably placed at 143 for two after 35 over’s. Sri Lanka lost their last eight wickets for just 40 runs against India’s disciplined spin-pace combination. India batted sensibly after the second-ball dismissal of Amay Khurasiya.
Virender Sehwag batted aggressively and Laxman began with a flurry of shots. Laxman and stand-in captain Dravid did not take any risks, relying more on singles and two in the middle over’s to consolidate their team’s position. When Dravid fell, India required 33 more runs to win from their last 13 over’s with seven wickets in hand.
VVS Laxman continued to bat confidently to complete the job. Mahela Jayawardene hit a quickfire 58 and pace bowler Vaas grabbed three quick wickets as Sri Lanka reached the final of the triangular tournament with a 106-run victory over New Zealand. The hosts made 221 for six from their 36 over are in the rain-affected match, New Zealand struggling to 115 for nine in reply.
Left-arm Chaminda Vaas sliced through the top order, removing opener Mathew Sinclair and pinch-hitter Jacob Oram in his second over. He added the scalp of captain Stephen Fleming as New Zealand collapsed to 18 for five in eight overs. The win gave Sri Lanka eight points from five matches, New Zealand four from five and India two from four.
Mahela Jayawardene hit two sixes and four fours in his 46-ball knock. Fleming won the toss and elected to field only for openers Jayasuriya and Gunawardene to get Sri Lanka off to a brisk start. For New Zealand, Nash and Chris Harris shared a sixth-wicket stand of 39 before wickets started to fall again. From 83-9, the last-wicket pair of Kyle Mills and Daryl Tuffey took the score to 115 in 27 balls but the victory target remained a distant dream.
Yuvraj Singh hit a chanceless unbeaten 98 to steer India to a 46-run victory over Sri Lanka. Yuvraj’s second one- day fifty in 19 matches came at a crucial time for India, who was struggling at 38 for four when he walked in to bat. Rahul Dravid weighed in with 47.
The Indians, who needed to win to keep their hopes alive of reaching the Coca-Cola Cup final, made 227 for eight from their 50 over’s, despite losing a wicket with the first ball of the match, and then dismissed Sri Lanka for 181 in 45.5 over’s on a seaming pitch.
Earlier, India was jolted when pace-man Vaas had Sehwag lbw with the first ball of the day. Ganguly also fell without scoring after a frustrating 16-ball stay. Yuvraj, however, had other ideas. He drove paceman Suresh Perera and raised his fifty, off 67 halls, with a single to deep point off occasional spinner Russel Arnold. Yuvraj Singh hammered Vaas for a six over mid-wicket and needed a four off the last ball for his maiden international hundred but managed only a couple to mid-on off Fernando.
Virender Sehwag blasted a rapid 100 off 70 balls to lead India into the final of the tournament after a seven-wicket over New Zealand. Sehwag’s innings, the second-fastest century by an Indian in One-day Internationals and the seventh quickest of all time, lifted his team to 267 for three in reply to New Zealand’s respectable 264 for seven.
Sehwag set the pulses racing at the SSC Ground in Colombo as India chased 265 to win; hitting 19 fours and one six to post his maiden limited-overs international hundred off just 09 balls. Only Mohammad Azharuddin, among Indian batsmen, has reached three figures off fewer deliveries, having raced to his century off 62 balls against New Zealand at Baroda in 1988.
Virender Sehwag shared in a 143-run first-wicket stand with skipper Ganguly, who hit 64 with seven boundaries. Dravid contributed an unbeaten 67 to see India through with more than four over’s to spare. Earlier, Astle underpinned the New Zealand innings with a well-paced 108, his second hundred of the tournament.
His 11th one-day century came off 138 halls in the 47th over. Captain Fleming chipped in with 66 and Lu Vincent hammered 45 off 37 balls to help the Kiwis raise 82 in the last 10 ovens. So, all credit goes to the Sri Lanka team by winning Coca-Cola Cup in a stylish way, as India choke again in the triangular final.