Sri Lanka and Afghanistan crossed swords in the first match of the Super 4 round of the Asia Cup 2022. The Island nation’s skipper Dasun Shanaka won the toss and elected to field first. Not a questionable decision going by history but at the end of the powerplay, the captain might have given it a thought.
Afghanistan batters, Hazratullah Zazai and Rahmanullah Gurbaz opened the innings for the team. It looked like Gurbaz had a plan in his mind as he toyed with the Sri Lankan bowlers. Thanks to Gurbaz’ onslaught, Afghanistan made a rollicking start to the innings.
Not what Sri Lanka would have expected but the bowlers kept coming up with poor lengths. Sri Lanka’s biggest bet, Wanindu Hasaranga was also smashed around the park as Afghanistan reached the 80-run mark at the end of ten overs.
Rahmanullah Gurbaz played a splendid inning before he departed for 84 runs. His wicket, however, helped Sri Lanka making a comeback in the latter stage of the innings. Afghanistan still went on to score 175 in the first innings in what looked like a defendable score against lackluster Sri Lanka.
Sri Lanka’s fantastic chase
Sri Lankan openers, Pathum Nissanka and Kusal Mendis got off to a slow start but didn’t lose any wicket either. The duo went on to put on a 62-run partnership for the opening wicket. Pathum Nissanka (35) and Kusal Mendis (36) imparted confidence in the next batters with their clean hitting. Despite losing a couple of wickets, Sri Lanka still looked on course to clinch the crucial win.
At the end of 14 overs, the match looked equally poised with Sri Lanka trailing by 58 runs. Danushka Gunathilaka, with a 33 off just 20, edged Sri Lanka closer to an upset in the first match. A bit of heated moment between Rashid Khan and Gunathilaka got to the batter’s head and he was bowled out by the Afghanistan star.
The winning side got into a bit of scare towards the end as they lost reactionary wicket trying to finish with a bag but calm minds persisted. Wanindu Hasaranga and Chamika Karunaratne took their side to an impressive win.
Let’s look at how Twitter reacted to Sri Lanka’s important win against Afghanistan in the first Super Four match:
Srilanka srilanka srilanka!!!#AFGvSL
— Ejaz Butt (@tooth__snatcher) September 3, 2022
— Nimi Kumar (@nimikumar12) September 3, 2022
— Aviral Rai (@cric_fan23) September 3, 2022
What a win from srilanka, what a chase down, incredible cricket From Sri lanka#AFGvSL
— Abdul Samad (@shalmeen132) September 3, 2022
— umair khan (@ksz399) September 3, 2022
— Memehub (@Memehub07) September 3, 2022
SL Intent In The Chase Has Been Commendable #AFGvSL
— Chatil Panditasekara (@ChatilPandi) September 3, 2022
— $@||@ (@TheSanaK) September 3, 2022
— Ajith Nagappan (@ajith_nagappan) September 3, 2022
SL batters intent >>> Rajapaksa faced 2nd delivery of his innings and hit Mujeeb a boundary over covers and in this over he hit 3 back to back boundaries. That's why i was rating this team very highly and today they finally playing to their potential. #AFGvSL
— Abdul Wasay (@andy_abdulwasay) September 3, 2022