ODI World Cup 2023: Sri Lanka scored 344 runs against Pakistan
Kusal Mendis and Sadeera Samarawickrama scored centuries as Sri Lanka scored 344 runs in the first innings. Here is a recap.
After a tough loss while chasing against South Africa, Sri Lanka decided to bat first after winning the toss against Pakistan. Sri Lanka scored 344 runs against Pakistan. Here is a recap of the first innings.
Sri Lanka in control of powerplay despite losing Perera early
Hasan Ali struck with just his fourth ball of the match as Sri Lanka lost Kusal Perera for a four-ball in the second over. Despite the early wicket, Sri Lanka looked in control of their innings. Pakistan dropped a couple of catches to dismiss Kusal Mendis early. In the fifth over, Mendis drove a full-length ball straight towards the bowler, Shaheen Afridi. The left-arm pacer got low on his follow through but was unable to catch as the ball hit him on the shin. Imam-ul-Haq dropped Mendis at backward point in the seventh over. It was a simpler chance in comparison to the one that Shaheen dropped on his own bowling. Mendis was playing a square drive and gave Imam a chance at face height but the Pakistani opener dropped the catch. Pathum Nissanka smashed a four and a six in the eighth over. Sri Lanka ended the powerplay with 58 runs for the loss of the solitary wicket.
Right after the powerplay, Sri Lanka increased their run rate by hitting 30 runs in the next four overs. Shadab Khan was introduced in the attack right after the first drinks break in the 16th over and was greeted by a six on just the fourth ball of his first over by Kusal Mendis. Nissanka and Mendis reached their respective half-centuries in the following over. Nissanka reached his half-century in 58 balls while Mendis only took 40 balls to reach the milestone. Shadab dismissed Nissanka in the next over.
Pakistan in trouble
Shadab in his next over concedes 12 runs as both Sadeera Samarawickrama and Mendis hit the leg-spinner for boundaries. Haris Rauf in the next over also went for runs and leaked 20 after he was hit for a couple of sixes and a four by both of the batters. After runs were being leaked from both ends, Babar Azam brought his most potent weapon, Shaheen Afridi. Shaheen too was greeted with boundaries. In just the first over of his new spell, Kusal Mendis struck three boundaries in a row to make it a 14-run over.
Kusal Mendis hits fastest century for Sri Lankan in CWC
Hasan Ali replaced Shaheen just after one over and was hit for a six on the first ball of his spell. Kusal Mendis completed his century with a six in just 65 balls. This was also the highest score for any Sri Lankan vs Pakistan in World Cups. Kusal Mendis’ 65-ball is the sixth fastest century of the World Cup. The wicket-keeper batter was dismissed in the 29th over by Hasan Ali. He smashed two consecutive sixes off Hasan Ali’s bowling and was going for the third which brought about his downfall. Imam who dropped Mendis earlier in the innings took the catch to dismiss the centurion. His score of 122 is the second-highest for any Sri Lankan wicketkeeper in World Cup falling short by just two runs off Kumar Sangakkara’s 124 against Scotland in 2015.
Hasan Ali then dismissed the new batter, Charith Asalanka to pull things back for Pakistan in his next over. The Pakistan bowlers strung together a few quiet overs as they conceded only 18 runs in overs 31-35. During this time, Samarawickrama completed his half-century in 43 balls. Shadab and Mohammad Nawaz continued to be expensive whenever brought on. Pakistan lost a review in the 37th over while challenging a caught-behind call against Dhananjaya de Silva. Keeper Rizwan was not interested in the review but bowler Shaheen persuaded Shadab to go for the review (Babar was not on the field so Shadab was the man in charge).
Sri Lanka looks set for a huge total going into death overs
At the end of the 40 overs, Sri Lanka had scored 283 runs for the loss of four wickets. Hasan Ali was brought into the attack and conceded 11 runs in his over as Samarawickrama hit two boundaries. Nawaz from the other end dismissed de Silva who came down the track to loft it over the boundary. After three quiet overs resulting only in six runs, Samarawickrama took the attack on Nawaz by hitting a six to move into the 90s. Nawaz conceded 11 runs in the 44th over. Samarawickrama completed his maiden century in the 46th over taking just 82 balls. Shaheen picked up his first wicket of the match by dismissing Dasun Shanaka in the 47th over. Hasan Ali picked up his fourth wicket by dismissing the centurion, Samarawickrama in the 48th over.