New Zealand A have lost their final warm-up match ahead of their Tri-Series in the UK, going down to Sri Lanka A by 14 runs via the Duckworth Lewis system.
The kiwis will again face the Sri Lankan side on Tuesday in the opening game of their Tri-Series with England A, but got a first look at Sri Lanka in Cardiff on Saturday night. Unfortunately the One Day match was cut short by rain, limiting it to a 20 over affair.
On a tough batting deck Sri Lanka did well to make 133-7 in their innings, with Chaturanga de Silva leading the way with 52. In response, New Zealand was held to 121 all out after 19.4 overs, with Dean Brownlie’s 36 the top score.
Having won the toss and opted to field first, the New Zealand bowlers were on top of their opposing batsmen for large parts, though were forced from the field intermittently due to weather. The strike bowling trio of Hamish Bennett, Scott Kuggeleijn and Doug Bracewell all had success in the wickets column, with Bennett securing the best figures of 3-14 from four overs.
Middle-order batsmen De Silva held it together for Sri Lanka though, pushing them beyond the 100 mark to a competitive total on the green wicket. Seekkuge Prasanna capped off the innings nicely, with a quick-fire 23 from 12 deliveries.
In response, New Zealand looked to be well on track thanks to a 55 run partnership for the second wicket between Hamish Rutherford (35) and Brownlie. At 61-1 their side was in the box seat, but the loss of Rutherford in the seventh over led to a collapse, one which they would not recover from.
Prasanna took four wickets in quick succession and swung the momentum firmly back in favour of Sri Lanka. In the end, New Zealand finished 14 runs short of their target and all out with two balls to spare.
The team will be hoping to turn things around for the two side’s rematch in a couple of days’ time.