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Disappointment for Johnston at batting shortfall


Ireland Wolves head coach Peter Johnston admitted the batsmen let themselves down when they were bowled out for 151 in the fourth and penultimate one-day game against Sri Lanka A in Colombo.

With two centuries on the tour and some big partnerships, while a target of 354 was always going to be extremely difficult to chase against a strong bowling line-up, to last less than 31 overs was a big disappointment.

"Whether it was fatigue from the heat and all the work we have put in so far, who knows why, but we let ourselves down with the bat today, that's for sure," said Johnston.

"Scores of 350 are what we need to be able to chase down in international cricket away from home - we almost did that in game one, and I would have expected us to be far more resilient and value our wickets better to give ourselves a fighting chance today on a good pitch."

Simi Singh, certain to be named today in the Ireland senior squad which leaves next Sunday for their tours to Oman and against Afghanistan in India, was top scorer with 31, but not one batsman could survive 30 balls as the Wolves were dismissed inside 31 overs and it needed a last wicket stand of 27, dominated by James Cameron-Dow, just to last that long.

Johnston insists "all the batters have definitely made huge progress this trip" but they have only one more game, tomorrow, to put that into practice.

The Sri Lanka A innings was dominated by 20-year-old opener Avishka Fernando who scored 139 in 40 overs and after his dismissal, the hosts added another 111 runs, without further loss.

Singh was also the most economical and successful bowler with James Cameron-Dow (1-40) and captain Harry Tector (1-32) the only other bowlers to go for less than eight runs an over,

Scores: Sri Lanka A 353-6 (50 overs; A Fernando 139, A Perera 56 not out, K Mendis 50 not out, M Bhanuka 34; S Singh 2-39) Ireland Wolves 151 (30.4 overs; S Singh 31, J Cameron-Dow 20; I Udana 3-33, K Mendis 3-34). Sri Lanka A won by 202 runs

Belfast Telegraph