Asia Cup, Karachi
India 310-4 (46.5 ovs) bt Sri Lanka 308-8 (50 ovs) by six wickets
Raina profited from an early reprieve to hit a useful 54 from 66 balls
India secured a place in the Asia Cup final after a six-wicket victory over Sri Lanka with 19 balls remaining.
The Sri Lankans, who had already qualified for Sunday's final, chose to bat and after Sanath Jayasuriya hit 43 Chamara Kapugedera made 75 in 78 balls.
Chasing 309, Virender Sehwag and Gautam Gambhir gave India their usual flying start, sharing 92 inside 12 overs.
Suresh Raina, dropped on 11, and Mahendra Dhoni made fifties and Yuvraj Singh settled it with successive fours.
Both teams carried forward two points from the group
matches and ended the Super Four stage with six points apiece.
The Indian victory ended Pakistan's hopes of
qualifying for the final, and they are left with an irrelevant last game against
Bangladesh on Friday.
Kapugedera shared 78 from 89 balls with Mahela Jaywardene (50) and
added 68 off 66 balls with Chamara Silva (50).
Jayawardene, having completed his 46th one-day fifty, holed out in the deep next ball, but his side added 46 from the final five overs.
Gambhir struck successive fours in the opening over as India replied fluently on the flat wicket.
a big total you need a good start which we have been getting
Sehwag (42) fired six fours and launched Nuwan Kulasekara over long-on for six before he was caught at short fine-leg, having been deceived by the seamer's slower ball.
Raina was dropped at cover by Sri Lanka substitute Jehan Mubarak and at the end of the powerplays after 20 overs India were 134-1, needing 175 from 30 overs.
The left-hander was run-out having passed fifty, his bat over the line but in the air as he dived in seeking a third run to Jayasuriya, covering at fine-leg.
Dhoni cleared the fielder on the long-off boundary to hit Jayasuriya for six, but he departed at the end of the 38th over with 56 still needed, when he misread Muttiah Muralitharan's
Kulasekera was dispatched for another six as Yuvraj flayed him over mid-wicket, and the powerful left-hander slammed a full toss from the same unfortunate bowler through extra-cover for the winning runs.
India skipper Dhoni, named Man-of-the-Match, said: "I think the pitches in this tournament have been very flat and there is nothing in it for the bowlers. Still, while chasing
a big total you need a good start which we have been getting."
Counterpart Jayawardene looked forward to meeting India again in the final and commented: "I think in a way with Pakistan eliminated from the final,
it is good for India and Sri Lanka because Pakistan can be a
very dangerous side in front of its home crowd."