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Pakistan complete record World Cup chase to beat Sri Lanka

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Kusal Mendis and Sadeera Samarawickrama hit superb centuries, but their efforts went in vain as Pakistan emerged victorious.

Mohammed Rizwan and Abdullah Shafique made centuries each helping Pakistan secure a six-wicket win over Sri Lanka in a high-scoring Cricket World Cup match played at Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium, Hyderabad yesterday.

Pakistan lost two early wickets for 37 runs while chasing a target of 345, but opener Abdullah Shafique who hit his maiden ODI century 113 in 103 balls with 10 fours and 3 sixes, and wicketkeeper Mohammed Rizwan battled severe cramp to hit an unbeaten 131, including 8 fours and 3 sixes in his career-best 121-ball innings, added a 176-run third-wicket stand to seal their victory with 10 balls to spare.

Sri Lankan bowlers couldn’t bowl well, giving away 26 extras (25 wides and a no-ball), which resulted in their six-wicket defeat.

Rizwan was named the Man of the Match.

Sri Lanka’s two centurions Kusal Mendis and Sadeera Samarawickrama had full control of the game to build up the Innings after electing to bat first.

Skipper Dasun Shanaka won the toss second time in back-to-back matches and without a moment’s hesitation he decided to bat first but openers Pathum Nissanka and Kusal Janith Perera were unable to make a good start. Perera was out for a duck in the second over which was bowled by Hasan Ali and wicketkeeper Mohammed Rizwan took a comfortable catch to dismiss Perera.

However, in-form batsman Kusal Mendis joined Pathum Nissanka in the middle and the pair added a 102-run second wicket stand. Nissanka scored his 10th ODI half century before walking back to the pavilion and leg spinner Shadab Khan made the breakthrough. Nissanka’s 51 came in 61 balls with 7 fours and a six.

Mendis who stroked a brisk 76 in their first game against South Africa on Saturday started off on the right foot but when he was on 12 runs Imam Ul Haq dropped an easy catch off Kusal. He continued his good run with the bat to get to the three-figure mark. He completed his fifty in 40 balls with 7 fours and 2 sixes.

Sadeera Samarawickrama joined Kusal Mendis and Pakistan bowlers were under pressure at this stage while the two batsmen unleashed strokes all over the ground to build up the innings.

Sadeera Samarawickrama reached his fifty in 43 balls with five fours and a six while Kusal Mendis completed his century in great style with a mid-wicket six off Hasan Ali and his 100 came in 65 balls with 13 fours and 4 sixes. Mendis’ 65-ball century was the fastest World Cup century hit by a Sri Lankan and used his brute force to get the much-needed sixes for Sri Lanka to accelerate the total.

In the 29th over which was bowled by Hasan Ali the stylish right-hander Kusal Mendis hit back-to-back sixes but his third attempt was missed while Imam Ul Haq took a well-judged catch at mid wicket near the boundary line to finish Mendis’ 77-ball innings which consisted 14 fours and 7 sixes.

Charith Asalanka was unable to stay long and was sent back to the pavilion after scoring only one run while Sadeera Samarawickrama completed his maiden century in 82 balls. Dhananjaya de Silva hit a valuable 25 in 34 balls while Skipper Dasun Shanaka hit 12 in 18 balls. Sadeera Samarawickrama was out in the 47.3 over after making 108 in 89 balls with 11 fours and 2 sixes Sri Lanka were 335 for 7 wickets at that stage.

However, the last ten overs saw Pakistan bowlers put more pressure on Sri Lanka as they managed to get 61 runs and finished the innings at 344 for 9 wickets. This was the first time two batsmen completed centuries in an innings at Hyderabad Stadium with Mendis and Samarawickrama taking that honour to mark this historic occasion.

Pakistan bowlers were under pressure but paceman Hasan Ali finally took best figures 4 for 71 in his ten-over spell and Haris Rauf captured 2 for 64. Shaheen Afridi the key paceman was punished by Sri Lankan top order and ended with 1 for 66 in his 9 overs.

Both Pakistan and Sri Lanka made one change yesterday while Sri Lanka brought in mystery spinner Maheesh Theekshana for Kasun Rajitha while Pakistan replaced opener Abdullah Shafique with Fakhar Zaman.

Sri Lanka will play their third game on October 16 against Australia in Lucknow while today (11) India will meet Afghanistan in Delhi under flood light commencing at 2 pm.

Kusal Injured

Kusal Mendis suffered cramps and had to be taken to the hospital following his brilliant knock of 122 yesterday.

Sadeera Samarawickrama took over the wicket-keeping duties from Mendis during Pakistan’s chase.

Team Manager Mahinda Halangoda confirmed Mendis has recovered but was kept in the hospital for a short period under medical observation. He was discharged after observation and has been advised to rest.

Wanindu undergoes surgery

Sri Lanka’s key leg spin all rounder Wanindu Hasaranga has undergone successful surgery in England to repair a defect in his hamstring, according to a senior official of SLC yesterday.

Wanindu Hasaranga was in Sri Lanka’s World Cup Provisional 20-member squad earlier but due to medical advice, he was not included in the World Cup squad.

“I will be out of action for a while, but I look forward to coming back stronger for my country”, he said.

The post Pakistan complete record World Cup chase to beat Sri Lanka appeared first on DailyNews.

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