Asia Cup 2023: Sri Lanka finishes with 291 runs in the first innings

Sri Lanka finished with 291 runs in the virtual knockout clash against Afghanistan. Afghanistan will need to chase this total in 37.1 or fewer overs.

After the first innings, the final group-stage match between Afghanistan and Sri Lanka has been a wonderful game. Sri Lanka has been limited to 291 runs by Afghanistan. Afghanistan must defeat Sri Lanka on NRR (Net Run Rate) in order to chase down this total in 37.1 overs or less in order to advance to the Super Fours stage of the Asia Cup 2023. Here is a brief summary of the opening innings.

Sri Lanka starts well with the bat in hand

In Lahore’s Gadaffi Stadium, Sri Lanka decided to bat first after winning the toss. Pathum Nissanka and Dimuth Karunaratne, the team’s openers, made sure to fully use the powerplay. In the powerplay, the pair scored 62 runs. After collecting 32 runs in 35 balls, Karunaratne was the first player to be sent out by Gulbadin Naib just two balls after the powerplay. After scoring 41 runs in 40 balls as the opener, Nissanka became Gulbadin’s second victim. Sadeera Samarawickrama, who had only scored three runs, was Gulbadin’s third victim. Gulbadin Naib promptly claimed three wickets, allowing Sri Lanka to fall from 62/0 to 86/3 in a short period of time.


Kusal Mendis and Charith Asalanka share a century stand

Afghanistan’s bowlers, in particular Gulbadin Naib, had their tails up after losing three wickets for 86 runs in 17 overs. The wicketkeepers for Sri Lanka, Kusal Mendis and Charith Asalanka, made sure that the first innings went off without a hitch. Before Asalanka was dismissed, the pair shared a 102-run stand. In the partnership, Mendis took the aggressive role, and Asalanka acted as his partner’s ideal anchor. In the stand, the Sri Lankan wicketkeeper scored 65 runs in 56 balls. Through a caught and bowled, Rashid Khan joined the fray and claimed Charith Asalanka’s wicket.

Afghanistan’s spinners put the brakes on Sri Lanka’s scoring

Asalanka’s dismissal allowed Afghanistan to into the game. Sri Lanka was cruising at 188/3 as Asalanka and Mendis began to bat. However, a lot of things were altered by Rashid’s introduction and Asalanka’s wicket. In the 40th over, Sri Lanka scored 227 for the cost of 7 wickets thanks to four fast wickets. Dhananjaya de Silva was the first victim of Mujeeb ur Rahman’s bowling. In a very bad way, Kusal was fired. Rashid’s full delivery was hit by Dasun Shanka straight to the bowler, who tried to make the catch, but the ball veered off his hands and struck the stumps at the non-striker’s end. Mendis was dismissed for 92 runs in 84 balls after being caught short of his crease.

Dunith Wellalage and Theekshana score crucial runs

When Sri Lanka’s captain, Dasun Shanaka, was out for 227 in the 40th over, things appeared hopeless. Down the order, Dunith Wellalage and Maheesh Theekshana scored significant runs. In just 63 balls, the lower-order pair scored 64 runs. 33 runs were scored by Wellalage in just 39 balls. He hit one six and three fours during his knock. Theekshana was out on the final pitch of the innings by Gulbadin after scoring 28 runs in 24 balls. With a total of four wickets, Gulbadin Naib helped Afghanistan restrict Sri Lanka to 291 runs.

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