Batsmen fire as Sri Lanka take first T20

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Tillakaratne Dilshan cracked 56 off just 37 balls as he lead Sri Lanka to a 30-run victory over the West Indies in the first of two T20Is in Pallekele on Monday.

The 39 year-old Dilshan was the top-scorer in a sublime batting performance from the hosts as they posted a mammoth 215 for three in their 20 overs.

The innings got off to a blistering start as Dilshan and Kusal Perera (40 from 30 balls) put on 91 for the first wicket inside 10 overs after being sent in to bat by Windies captain Darren Sammy.

Kieron Pollard got the breakthrough for the visitors but there was no let up from the incoming batsmen as they all contributed to the formidable total.

Shehan Jayasuriya (36 off 22 balls), Dinesh Chandimal (40 off 19 balls) and Angelo Mathews (37 off 13 balls) made sure Sri Lanka made the highest T20I score at the ground and give the Caribbean outfit a tough chase.

Pollard finished with two for 22 in four overs but the best bowler by far on display for the tourists was mystery spinner Sunil Narine, who only conceded 20 runs in his four overs and picked up the wicket of Jayasuriya.

The Windies chase got off to the worst possible start when opener Johnson Charles was bowled by Lasith Malinga in the first over of the innings with no runs on the board.

Andre Fletcher (57), Pollard (26) and Dwayne Bravo (24) fought bravely but they could not prevent Sri Lanka from taking the honours in the series opener, eventually the West Indies were bowled out for 185.

The second and final T20I will be played on Wednesday in Colombo.

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