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Friday, October 20, 2006


Upul Tharanga and Muttiah Muralitharan led Sri Lanka to a comprehensive seven-wicket victory over New Zealand in their Champions Trophy Group B match on Friday.
The left-handed Tharanga hit 56 and shared an 89-run second-wicket stand with captain Mahela Jayawardene (48) as Sri Lanka reached their target of 166 with 14 overs to spare.
It was their first victory in the tournament, having lost their opening game to Pakistan. New Zealand had started their campaign with a win over South Africa.
Off spinner Muralitharan grabbed four for 23 as New Zealand were bowled out for 165 after winning the toss.
Nathan Astle made a battling 42 for the Kiwis while Daniel Vettori (46 not out) and Jeetan Patel (10) put on 47 for the last wicket.
Fast start
The in-form Tharanga, who struck centuries in the qualifying matches against Bangladesh and Zimbabwe, and Sanath Jayasuriya gave Sri Lanka a fast start to their reply.
Jayasuriya hit Shane Bond for six over the cover boundary before cutting the fast bowler to the fence off the next ball.
Bond, who missed the opening match due to a back strain, went for 36 runs in his first four-over spell but Kyle Mills eventually had Jayasuriya caught behind for 20.
Jayawardene then joined forces with Tharanga to take the game away from the Kiwis.
Earlier, Muralitharan dismissed Astle, Mills, Jacob Oram and Brendon McCullum after the pacemen had reduced New Zealand to 56 for three.
Left-arm seamer Chaminda Vaas struck an early blow when he trapped skipper Stephen Fleming lbw for a duck. Farveez Maharoof and Lasith Malinga also accounted for Lou Vincent and Hamish Marshall.
Sri Lanka next play South Africa in Ahmedabad on Tuesday while New Zealand take on Pakistan in Mohali the day after


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SoSuechtig, Burajiru