Windies lose warm-up to Sri Lanka

Colombo, Sri Lanka, CMC – West Indies went down to Sri Lanka by four wickets in their second ICC Cricket World Cup match on Tuesday night. Batting first after winning the toss on a placid pitch, the Windies rattled up 281-9 off their 20 overs – their highest score on tour so far. The bowlers were however unable to limit the Sri Lanka batsmen who reached 282-6 to win with 15 balls remaining at the refurbished R Premadasa Stadium. Sulieman Benn was the pick of the West Indies bowlers with 3-40 from his 10 overs. There was also some brilliant wicket-keeping from Darren Bravo, who took three stunning catches deputizing for Carlton Baugh, who picked up a left hamstring niggle while batting in the first half of the match. For Sri Lanka skipper Kumar Sangakkara led the way with 71, Tillekaratne Dilshan cracked with 62, and Thilan Samaraweera made 55 off 55 balls with two boundaries. Earlier in the day, Chris Gayle smashed eight fours and a six in 58 from 38 balls, and Darren Bravo struck five boundaries in 54 from 78 balls. Gayle added 88 for the second wicket with Darren Bravo, who also put on 74 with Ramnaresh Sarwan (39). Supporting knocks came from Carlton Baugh, with 29 before he retired hurt; while skipper Darren Sammy (21), Dwayne Bravo (20), and Andre Russell with 19 not out played with enterprise. The teams now continue their final preparations for the World Cup, which opens on Saturday in Bangladesh. West Indies will travel to Delhi in India for their opening match against South Africa at the Feroz Shah Kotla Stadium in Delhi on Thursday, February 24. They then face The Netherlands (February 28, Delhi), Bangladesh (March 4, Dhaka), Ireland (March 11, Mohali), England (March 17, Chennai), and India (March 20, Chennai).