Afghanistan and Sri Lanka were involved in a tight and crunch encounter in the ongoing Asia Cup 2023. Both the teams had a game which went right down to the wire and Sri Lanka eventually emerged out victorious in this match.
The Lankan tigers won the game by 2 runs as the high-octane game was an absolute thriller. Afghanistan dealt with a heartbreak but the match was one for the ages. Kusal Mendis played a match-winning knock and was deservedly given the player of the match award.
Batting first, Sri Lanka posted 291 runs on the board for the loss of 8 wickets in 50 overs. On the other hand, Afghanistan managed to score 289 runs and eventually fell short by 2 runs.
Notably, Sri Lanka have qualified for the Super 4s and Afghanistan have lost out on the race to Sri Lanka and Bangladesh.
In this article, we take a look at the top 3 talking points of this SL vs AFG game in the ongoing Asia Cup 2023:
1. Kusal Mendis’s impactful knock
Sri Lankan top-order batter Kusal Mendis had a wonderful game in this match as he scored 92 runs in 84 balls. His knock was packed with 6 fours and 3 sixes and he made sure that Sri Lanka reach a humongous total.
Mendis was unfortunately run-out by Rashid Khan and therefore he couldn’t complete a much-needed and a much-deserved century.
2. Gulbadin Naib’s impressive bowling
Former Afghani captain Gulbadin Naib bowled exceedingly well in this Asia Cup 2023 game and bagged 4 wickets. His impactful bowling left an indelible mark in the game as he made sure that Sri Lanka don’t reach a mind-boggling total.
His wickets included Pathum Nissanka, Dimuth Karunaratne, Sadeera Samarawickrama and Maheesh Theekshana. All the wickets were high-profile ones and Naib’s fantastic bowling was a key reason as to why Afghanistan were able to restrict Sri Lanka to a total less than 300.
3. Mohammad Nabi’s blistering innings went in vain
One of the most versatile all-rounders of Afghanistan, Mohammad Nabi smashed the fastest fifty by an Afghani batter in this format in just 24 deliveries. Nabi’s swashbuckling innings was peppered with 6 fours and 5 sixes but that innings eventually went in vain.
Till the time he was there on crease, Afghanistan had a glimmer of hope in this particular game. But Nabi will have to be sad and crestfallen with this result as his team failed to cross the finishing line.