England keeper-batsman Sam Billings was in the limelight during the first ODI between the hosts and Sri Lanka in Chester Le Street on Wednesday despite not scoring runs. Sam Billings showcased a brilliant piece of fielding to get rid of Praveen Jayawickrama at the non-striker’s end by producing a direct hit. The 30-year old ended the tourists’ innings at a modest 185.
The dismissal occurred at the 43rd over, when Chamika Karunaratne nudged one onto the leg side and the batsmen began running. But Sam Billings, a notoriously quick outfielder, came running from mid-on and fired an excellent throw. It caught Jayawickrama well short at the non-striker’s end for a single as Sri Lanka’s innings ended at an underwhelming 185. Kusal Perera’s 73 was the highest and Wanindu Hasaranga scored 54, while those two were amongst the only three to reach double figures.
But after dismissing Sri Lanka for 185, England stuttered and faced troubles while chasing the modest score. Even though Jonny Bairstow gave the home side a rollicking start, he fell for 43 off 21 balls and at one stage, England were 80-4. Liam Livingstone, Eoin Morgan, and Sam Billings all perished for a single-figure score. Eventually, Joe Root’s calm head saw the hosts home in the chase as he finished not out at 79 and shared a 91-run stand with Moeen Ali. Chris Woakes earned the man of the match award for his figures of 10-5-18-4. England took a 1-0 lead in the three-match rubber with a win by five wickets. The second ODI will take place on the 1st of July at the Oval.
Below is the clip of Sam Billings affecting the run-out:
Bilbo's done it again! 🎯
— England Cricket (@englandcricket) June 29, 2021