Sri Lanka defeated Afghanistan in the Super Twelve match of the T20 World Cup 2022. The Asian champions won by 6 wickets at the Gabba in Brisbane. After getting this victory, Sri Lanka has risen to the third position in Group 1 with 4 points and kept their hopes alive for the semi-finals.
New Zealand and Australia occupy the first and second positions in Group A with equal 5 points. Afghanistan has only 2 points with one match remaining. So, there is no chance for the Afghans to make it to the Semi-finals.
On Tuesday (November 1), Dasun Shanaka’s team reached the port of victory with 9 balls in hand with Dhananjaya de Silva’s storming innings in response to Afghanistan’s 144 runs. Although the Lankans were under a bit of pressure in the run chase, Afghan spinner Mujeeb Ur Rahman did not let the Lankan batsmen open their hands in the power play. At the end of 6 overs, Sri Lanka’s score stood at 28 runs for 1 wicket.
Pathum Nissanka returned to the dressing room with 10 runs off 10 balls but Kusal Mendis collected 25 off 27 balls before falling victim to Rashid Khan. Then Charith Asalanka became Rashid Khan’s second victim. He added 19 runs to his name before returning to the pavilion. Bhanuka Rajapaksa scored 18 runs before getting out off Mujeeb.
In the first 10 overs, the Lankans lost 2 wickets and scored a total of 63 runs. As a result, they needed 82 more runs in the last 10 overs to win. However, with an ample number of wickets in hand, the Lankan batsmen attacked the Afghan bowlers.
Dhananjaya de Silva continued to fight with the bat on one side of the wicket. This batsman left the field scoring his half-century and winning the match for his team. He played an unbeaten innings of 66 runs off 42 balls with 6 boundaries and 2 sixes. Mujeeb Ur Rahman and Rashid Khan took 2 wickets each for the Afghans.
Earlier, after winning the toss in Brisbane and batting first, Afghanistan raised some hopes of throwing a big target at the opponents. However, due to the failure of the batsmen, they could not score good runs in the end. However, the Afghans built a solid foundation on the power play. Their opening pair scored 42 runs without losing any wickets in 6 overs.
Rahmanullah Gurbaz scored 28 runs off 24 balls before falling to Lahiru Kumara. He hit 2 fours and 2 sixes. After that, Usman Ghani returned to the dressing room with a catch in the hands of captain Dasun Shanaka off Wanindu Hasaranga. The opener scored 27 runs off 27 balls with 2 fours and 1 six before leaving the crease.
Then Ibrahim Zadran walked back to the pavilion after scoring 22 runs in 18 balls with 1 four and 1 six. Najibullah Zadran added 18 runs off 16 balls to the team’s scoreboard before leaving the crease. Besides, Gulbadin Naib was run out. He collected 12 runs. Captain Mohammad Nabi made 13 runs playing 8 balls.
Besides, Rashid scored 9, Azmatullah Omarzai scored 3 and Mujeeb scored 1 run. In the end, Afghanistan’s innings stopped at 144 runs for 8 wickets in the allotted 20 overs. Wanindu Hasaranga took the highest number of 3 wickets for Sri Lanka with 13 runs in 4 overs. Besides, Lahiru Kumara took 2 wickets, and Dhananjaya de Silva and Kasun Rajitha took 1 wicket each.
Afghanistan’s hopes of semis ended completely with this defeat against Sri Lanka. And because of this victory, the faint hopes of the semi-finals are kept alive by the Lankans. They must win the last match against England. Shanaka’s team also has to wish for poor results from the other teams in this group having the chances for the same, although that is pure fantasy. Whatever the result at the end of these cricketing battles, Sri Lanka’s focus will be on their final match.
Afghanistan – 144/8 (20.0)
Sri Lanka – 148/4 (18.3)
Result – Sri Lanka won by 6 wickets
Player of the match – Wanindu Hasaranga
AFG vs SL Playing XIs
|AFG||Mohammad Nabi (c), Rahmanullah Gurbaz (wk), Ibrahim Zadran, Usman Ghani, Gulbadin Naib, Rashid Khan, Najibullah Zadran, Azmatullah Omarzai, Mujeeb Ur Rahman, Fazalhaq Farooqi, and Fareed Ahmad Malik.|
|SL||Dasun Shanaka (c), Kusal Mendis (wk), Pathum Nissanka, Dhananjaya de Silva, Bhanuka Rajapaksa, Wanindu Hasaranga, Charith Asalanka, Maheesh Theekshana, Lahiru Kumara, Pramod Madushan, and Kasun Rajitha.|