Tillakaratne Dilshan smashes first T20 ton
Royal Challengers opener and Sri Lanka skipper Tillakaratne Dilshan slammed 104* against Australia in the tour opening T20 at Pallekele in Sri Lanka on Saturday, 6th August.
Dilshan reached his ton off 55 balls before ending at 104* off 57 with 12 fours and 5 sixes. Sri Lanka won the match by 35 runs, going 1-0 up in the two game T20 series.
Dilshan's counterpart in the Australian team, ex Royal Challenger Cameron White may have been delighted when Brett Lee snagged dangerous SL batsman Mahela Jayawardene early. Dilshan had other ideas though and the fireworks that followed showed his class and brilliant counter attacking skills under pressure.
He immediately launched into Lee, getting lucky with a top edge that sailed for a six and followed that with a statement of defiance, beating point for a four. After that he let his partners Dinesh Chandimal and Sangakkara attack, taking the anchor's job himself.
There were a few nervous and unpleasant moments during his innings, such as when Sangakkara was nearly run out once. Another time, Dilshan played back a ball to the bowler Watson who fielded it and let it rip at Dilshan's face. He fended it with his gloves upon which Watson appealed unsuccessfully for a run out/obstruction to fielders.
He survived, then stepped up the aggression in the last quarter of SL's innings, taking the 16th over off Hastings for 20 runs, the 18th over by Watson for 22 and the 20th over by Johnson for 20 runs.
He reached his first T20 international century with his patented shot, the Dilscoop in the last over. The partnership for the 4th wicket had brought up 104 runs in just 45 balls taking SL to a massive 198/3 in their 20 overs.
Australia folded very easily as none of the batsmen bar David Warner could get going. SL bowlers Nuwan Kulasekara and Dilruwan Perera tore through the batting and were well supported by the other bowlers as Aus ended at 163/8. The 35 run win put SL 1-0 ahead in the two game T20 series.