Wednesday, November 26th, 2014

Moeen Hits Maiden One-Day Hundred For England In Colombo

Moeen Hits Maiden One-Day Hundred For England In Colombo

Moeen Ali achieved his maiden century in One-Day International cricket for England but ended up on the losing side as Sri Lanka won the opening match by 25 runs in Colombo.

The Worcestershire all-rounder reached three figures off just 72 balls with four sixes and 10 fours and went onto make 119.

But England were dismissed for 292 in 47.1 overs in pursuit of Sri Lanka's 317-6 in 50 overs.

A single off spinner Jeevan Mendis took Moeen to three figures  – the third fastest ODI  century by an England batsman.

It followed on from his maiden Test hundred against the Sri Lankans at Headingley last summer.

Moeen, who scored 136 off 90 balls against Sri Lanka for Worcestershire in a 50 over match in 2011 at New Road, had raced to his half century off just 25 balls when he swept Rangana Herath for his 10th four.

He then surpassed his previous best ODI score of 67 against India at Edgbaston last summer with successive sixes off Herath over mid-wicket.

He survived two chances, on 72 and a more difficult one on 89, but in between looked in complete control and his timing was immaculate. 

Moeen had first been in action with the ball after England skipper Alastair Cook put the home side into bat.

He was introduced into the attack in the 14th over and in his sixth over trapped Kumar Sangakkara lbw for two.

Sangakarra reviewed the decision but the replays showed the delivery beating the outside edge and going onto hit middle and off stump.

It was the third time Moeen had dismissed Sangakkara in his short international career, having accounted for him twice in the Test series with Sri Lanka last summer.

Moeen finished with figures of 1-66 from 10 overs as Sri Lanka totalled 317-6.

He opened the innings with Cook looking to build on his half century against Sri Lanka 'A' in Friday's warm-up fixture.

Moeen had a slice of luck on seven when he aimed a pull at Angelo Matthews and the ball appeared to hit the base of the stumps and did not dislodge a bail.

But that aside the 27-year-old reeled off a series of powerful shots which brought him a succession of boundaries including four in a row off Dhammika Prasad.

England reached 100-1 in the 14th over for the loss of Cook (10) but then Ian Bell, Joe Root and Eoin Morgan departed in quick succession.

A six over square leg off Prasad took Moeen to 97 and he reached three figures in the next over.

Moeen was eventually dismissed for 119 when he offered a gentle caught and bowled to Jeevan Mendis with England 203-6 in the 31st over.

He had struck five sixes and 11 fours in his 87 ball innings.