Sri Lanka defeated Pakistan by two wickets in a virtual Asia Cup 2023 semi-final at the R.Premadasa Stadium in Colombo on Thursday.
India and Sri Lanka will play the Asia Cup 2023 final in Colombo on Sunday, September 17.
Charith Asalanka batted patiently as he had to carry his side over the line in the last few overs.
The Lions have stormed into the Super11 Asia Cup 2023 finals with an exceptional run chase. Kusal Mendis showcased impeccable skills with a 91-run innings, while Asalanka's brilliant late blitz proved to be the game-changer! 🇱🇰#AsiaCup2023 #PAKvSL pic.twitter.com/yTaP7TxLog— AsianCricketCouncil (@ACCMedia1) September 14, 2023
Zaman Khan’s brilliance allowed the away team to protect six runs in the final two balls in the last over.
The second final ball of the contest hit the boundary line after Asalanka received an outside edge.
Sri Lanka Defeated Pakistan In Asia Cup 2023
When Zaman bowled a slower length ball on the pads, Sri Lanka needed two off one, but the left-handed batsman calmly stroked a straightforward shot to the deep square leg fence and celebrated by running two across the pitch to lead his team to a historic triumph.
He explained his last-ball win at a post-match ceremony.
“I encouraged Pathirana to run hard since it’s a vast field and I considered how to get two to hit a space. I expected a bouncer or yorker, but he bowled a slower ball, which helped me. Very excited. Mendis and Sadeera batted brilliantly. I meant to finish. That’s my job. “I rate this innings second,” he added.
Sri Lanka looked favorites from the outset, with seasoned and smart batsmen chasing 252 runs.
Kusal Mendis and Sadeera Samarawickrama’s 100-run partnership put their team in control.
Mendis left after 91 runs, while Samarawickrama succumbed to Iftikhar Ahmed two runs short of his half-century.
Despite taking three crucial wickets, Iftikhar’s efforts were in vain.
Muhammad Rizwan and Iftikhar together scored 252 runs for Pakistan in the first innings.
Rizwan played an unbeaten 86 off 73 with nine boundaries, while Abdullah Shafique hit his first ODI half-century and was the Green Shirts’ second top-scorer.
Pakistan won the toss and batted first. Rain shortened the match to 45 and 42 overs.
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