Home Cricket National Cricket Afghanistan down Sri Lanka for the first time in World Cups

Afghanistan down Sri Lanka for the first time in World Cups

ICC Cricket World Cup 2023

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Afghanistan produced a solid all-round performance to beat Sri Lanka by 7 wickets in their ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2023 encounter in Pune on Monday.

Reporting from Pune, India.

An intent-less batting innings by Sri Lanka limited to just 241 on a good batting track was never going to threaten Afghanistan, who cruised to the target with 28 balls to spare.

None of the Lankan batters crossed the fifty-run mark whilst, three batters for Afghanistan in Rahmat Shah, skipper Hashmatullah Shahidi and Azmatullah Omarzai made half-centuries in a well-calculated run-chase.

Before this competition, Afghanistan had never beaten a Test-playing nation in 50-over World Cups. But now they have beaten England, Pakistan and Sri Lanka in a great campaign so far. This is Sri Lanka’s first-ever defeat at the hands of Afghanistan in ICC events.

Chasing 242 runs to win, Sri Lanka struck early when the dangerous Rahmanullah Gurbaz was castled by Dilshan Madushanka in the very first over. But since then, three 50+ partnerships ensured Afghanistan had no jitters in their run-chase.

Madushanka got Ibrahim Zadran for 39, whilst Shah fell for 62 off Rajitha to make it 131 for 3. However, Shahidi and Omarzai added 111-run unbroken stand for the fourth wicket to see through till the end.

Earlier after being asked to bat first, with the inclusion of Dimuth Karunaratne, Sri Lanka expected a solid start at the top of the order, but the left-hander was trapped LBW for 15 by Fazalhaq Farooqi.

Sri Lanka managed only 41 for the loss of 1 wicket in the first powerplay, which is the lowest so far in the competition.

Pathum Nissanka, Sri Lanka’s most consistent batter in the World Cup so far, missed out on getting his 5th consecutive fifty, when he nicked behind off Azmatullah Omarzai for 46.

Skipper Kusal Mendis and Nissanka added 62 runs for the second wicket, whilst Mendis and Sadeera Samarawickrama managed to add 50 runs for the third wicket.

Mendis, who has been a little off colour since his century against Pakistan in Hyderabad, attempted a slog sweep off Mujeeb Ur Rahman and found the deep mid-wicket fielder to end his 50-ball 39.

Samarawickrama, Sri Lanka’s highest run getter in the competition, was caught plumb in front against Mujeeb as the Afghanistan tweaker suddenly broke the backbone of the Lankan batting line-up.

Batting at number six, Dhananjaya De Silva did not read Rashid Khan at all and was playing well away from his body. Rashid’s wrong ‘un went through the defences of De Silva as Sri Lanka lost half of their side at the end of the 36th over.

Charith Asalanka toed one off Farooqi and fell for 22 and Dushmantha Chameera, playing his first game of the World Cup ran himself out as Sri Lanka were 7 down for 185 runs at the end of the 40th over.

Experienced Angelo Mathews, batting at number 7, took his time to settle but scored the first six of the innings off Naveen Ul-Haq in the 46th over.

Along with Maheesh Theekshana, experienced Mathews managed to string together an effective 8th wicket stand of 45 runs. Theekshana scored a crucial 31-ball 29, batting at number 9 before becoming one of Farooqi’s four wickets. Farooqi’s 4 for 34 was his best figures in ODIs.

However, 241 was well below par on a pitch that got better for batting towards the second innings. From the toss to the last run being scored in their chase off a dropped chance, everything went well for Afghanistan.

With a couple of tough games coming up against India (2nd November) and New Zealand (9th November), Sri Lanka’s chances of qualifying for the semi-finals are good as over.

Sri Lanka – 241 (49.3 overs) Pathum Nissanka 46, Kusal Mendis 39, Sadeera Samarawickrama 36, Maheesh Theekshana 29, Fazalhaq Farooqi 4/34, Mujeeb Ur Rahman 2/38.

Afghanistan – 242/3 (45.2 overs) Ibrahim Zadran 39, Rahmat Shah 62, Hashmatullah Shahidi 58*, Azmatullah Omarzai 73*, Dilshan Madushanka 2/48

Result


Afghanistan
242/3 (45.2)

Sri Lanka
241/10 (49.3)

Batsmen R B 4s 6s SR
Pathum Nissanka c Rahmanullah Gurbaz b Azmatullah Omarzai 46 60 5 0 76.67
Dimuth Karunaratne lbw b Fazal Haq Farooqi 15 21 1 0 71.43
Kusal Mendis c Najibullah Zadran b Mujeeb ur Rahman 39 50 3 0 78.00
Sadeera Samarawickrama lbw b Mujeeb ur Rahman 36 40 3 0 90.00
Charith Asalanka c Rashid Khan b Fazal Haq Farooqi 22 28 2 0 78.57
Dhananjaya de Silva b Rashid Khan 14 26 1 0 53.85
Angelo Mathews c Mohammad Nabi b Fazal Haq Farooqi 23 26 1 1 88.46
Dushmantha Chameera run out (Ibrahim Zadran) 1 4 0 0 25.00
Mahesh Theekshana b Fazal Haq Farooqi 29 31 3 1 93.55
Kasun Rajitha run out (Rahmanullah Gurbaz) 5 7 0 0 71.43
Dilshan Madushanka not out 0 4 0 0 0.00


Extras 11 (b 0 , lb 2 , nb 0, w 9, pen 0)
Total 241/10 (49.3 Overs, RR: 4.87)
Bowling O M R W Econ
Mujeeb ur Rahman 10 0 38 2 3.80
Fazal Haq Farooqi 10 1 34 4 3.40
Naveen ul Haq 6.3 0 47 0 7.46
Azmatullah Omarzai 7 0 37 1 5.29
Rashid Khan 10 0 50 1 5.00
Mohammad Nabi 6 0 33 0 5.50


Batsmen R B 4s 6s SR
Rahmanullah Gurbaz lbw b Dilshan Madushanka 0 4 0 0 0.00
Ibrahim Zadran c Dimuth Karunaratne b Dilshan Madushanka 39 57 4 1 68.42
Rahmat Shah c Dimuth Karunaratne b Kasun Rajitha 62 74 7 0 83.78
Hashmatullah Shahidi not out 58 74 2 1 78.38
Azmatullah Omarzai not out 73 63 6 3 115.87


Extras 10 (b 0 , lb 1 , nb 0, w 9, pen 0)
Total 242/3 (45.2 Overs, RR: 5.34)
Bowling O M R W Econ
Dilshan Madushanka 9 0 48 2 5.33
Kasun Rajitha 10 0 48 1 4.80
Angelo Mathews 3 0 18 0 6.00
Dushmantha Chameera 9.2 0 51 0 5.54
Mahesh Theekshana 10 0 55 0 5.50
Dhananjaya de Silva 4 0 21 0 5.25