Sri Lanka Secures Asia Cup 2023 Super 4 Spot with Thrilling Win Over Afghanistan
On Tuesday at Lahore’s Gaddafi Stadium, Sri Lanka clinched a dramatic victory against Afghanistan in the Asia Cup 2023 Group B encounter, securing their place in the Super 4 stage.
Afghanistan Falls Short in Chase
In pursuit of a target of 291 runs, Afghanistan was dismissed for 289 runs in 37.4 overs. They needed to achieve the target in 37.1 overs or less to qualify for the Super 4, a feat they narrowly missed.
In a last-minute drama, Afghanistan’s last man, Fazalhaq Farooqi, defended three balls in the 38th over, resulting in his dismissal. This decision deprived Rashid Khan, who had scored 27 off 16, of a chance to secure the required runs.
Mohammad Nabi played a pivotal role for Afghanistan, contributing 65 runs in just 32 balls, including six fours and five sixes. Captain Hashmatullah Shahidi also chipped in with 59 runs from 66 balls.
Sri Lanka Sets a Target
Earlier, Sri Lanka won the toss and elected to bat, setting a target of 292 runs. They finished at 291-8 in 50 overs, with Kusal Mendis as the top run-scorer, making 92 runs in 84 balls.
Sri Lanka’s Batting Display
Sri Lanka had a solid start with Pathum Nissanka and Dimuth Karunaratne putting up 63 runs in 10.2 overs. However, they couldn’t capitalize on their starts, with both getting dismissed for 41 and 32 runs, respectively. Charith Asalanka contributed 36 runs in 43 balls.
Late Flourish for Sri Lanka
Dunith Wellalage (33 not out) and Maheesh Theekshana (28) added 64 runs in 63 balls for the eighth wicket, giving Sri Lanka momentum in the later stages of their innings.
Gulbadin Naib was the standout bowler for Afghanistan, taking 4-60 in 10 overs, while Rashid Khan claimed 2-63.
Both teams fielded the same playing XI for this crucial contest.
Afghanistan: 1 Rahmanullah Gurbaz (wk), 2 Ibrahim Zadran, 3 Rahmat Shah, 4 Hashmatullah Shahidi (capt), 5 Najibullah Zadran, 6 Mohammad Nabi, 7 Karim Janat, 8 Gulbadin Naib, 9 Rashid Khan, 10 Mujeeb Ur Rahman, 11 Fazalhaq Farooqi
Sri Lanka: 1 Pathum Nissanka, 2 Dimuth Karunaratne, 3 Kusal Mendis (wk), 4 Sadeera Samarawickrama, 5 Charith Asalanka, 6 Dhananjaya de Silva, 7 Dasun Shanaka (capt), 8 Dunith Wellalage, 9 Maheesh Theekshana, 10 Kasun Rajitha, 11 Matheesha Pathirana