Cricket World Cup 2019 results: Sri Lanka beat West Indies by 23 runs as Avishka Fernando's century outshines Rihanna in stands

Avishka Fernando celebrates his century
Avishka Fernando celebrates his century

Having pop star Rihanna in the stand couldn't help the West Indies as they suffered a 23-run defeat at the hands of Sri Lanka at Chester-le-Street.

Scorecard

Sri Lanka 338-6 (50 overs): Fernando 104, Holder 2-59

West Indies 315-9 (50 overs): Pooran 118, Malinga 3-55

Sri Lanka win by 23 runs

Report

Having pop star Rihanna in the stand couldn't help the West Indies as they suffered a 23-run defeat at the hands of Sri Lanka at Chester-le-Street.

Avishka Fernando's 104 helped Sri Lanka set a testing target for the Windies, who fell just short despite Nicholas Pooran's 118 - which nearly doubled his previous highest one-day international score of 63 with a fearless innings.

His dismissal with 31 still required ended the Windies' hopes of a World Cup record chase, while Fernando's maiden ODI century underpinned Sri Lanka's 338 for six in what was officially the tournament's first dead rubber.

Fernando, in particular, rose to the occasion in what could be a breakthrough innings in his ninth ODI, becoming Sri Lanka's youngest World Cup centurion following a fantastic 104 from 103 deliveries.

When the Windies slipped to 84 for four in reply, there seemed to be no way back, but Pooran's pyrotechnics, with his innings containing 11 fours and four sixes, kept the game in the balance.

Fabian Allen sacrificed himself after a quickfire 51 from 32 balls when Pooran was on 99, the third run out of the Windies' innings.

Pooran reached three figures for the first time in an international shirt off 92 balls but he was given a life on 108 when Thisara Perera misjudged a catch in the deep.

However, Angelo Mathews - brought on to bowl in an ODI for the first time since December 2017 - ended Pooran's stay, the batsman getting a thin edge to the wicketkeeper, after which the Windies charge fizzled out.

Their target may not have been insurmountable had they not delivered a lacklustre display in the field.

Dimuth Karunaratne and Kusal Perera laid an ideal platform for Sri Lanka, the openers rarely troubled in a 93-run union as clouds gave way to sunny skies.

Fernando had caught the eye against England and South Africa, on both occasions giving away his wicket when set, but there would be no wastefulness on this occasion as he was the mainstay of the innings.

An 85-run stand with Kusal Mendis (39) was ended by a sublime return catch off Fabian Allen while Angelo Mathews' assertive 26 was halted by a Holder yorker.

Fernando deposited Sheldon Cottrell for six once more before some hard running took him to three figures for the first time in Sri Lanka colours at exactly a run a ball.

Cottrell would have a measure of revenge, belatedly saluting Fernando after he holed out to long-off, but Sri Lanka's total seemed formidable when Lasith Malinga accounted for Sunil Ambris and Shai Hope.

Chris Gayle, potentially batting for the penultimate time for the Windies in England, was becalmed as both he and Shimron Hetmyer were dropped in the same Malinga over.

Gayle was warming to his task when he belted Kasun Rajitha for two sixes but the seamer would have the last laugh, the Windies powerhouse top-edging high into the air and Jeffrey Vandersay taking a steepler at short third man.

When Shimron Hetmyer was ran out, they were staring down the barrel but Pooran brought the game to life, only to fall at the death.

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