Sangakkara powers Sri Lanka to win

NAGPUR, December 9, 2009 (AFP) – Kumar Sangakkara smashed a career-best 78 off just 37 balls to set up Sri Lanka’s 29-run win in the first Twenty20 international against India here on Wednesday. India paid the price for some sloppy fielding with Yuvraj Singh dropping a sitter at point when Jayasuriya (26) was on two, the unlucky bowler being Ishant Sharma.

But Jayasuriya, who slammed Ashish Nehra for five fours in an over, could not make the most of the reprieve, with Ishant taking a fine catch off debutant Ashok Dinda.

Dilshan, dropped on 13 by Ishant off his own bowling, combined with Sangakkara to take Sri Lanka to 89-1 after 10 overs before being bowled by a yorker from Rohit Sharma.

India struck again to remove Mahela Jayawardene cheaply for nine but Kapugedera and Sangakkara made light of the setback, unleashing a flurry of hits to the fence to unsettle the Indians.

The second and final Twenty20 match will be played in Mohali on Saturday. Sangakkara smashed 11 fours and two sixes to help Sri Lanka amass 215-5 before Angelo Mathews and Sanath Jayasuriya picked two wickets each to restrict India to 186-9 in 20 overs at the Vidarbha Cricket Association stadium.

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