Ibrahim Zadran pilots Afghanistan to victory | Daily News

Ibrahim Zadran pilots Afghanistan to victory

Charith Asalanka plays a shot during his innings of 91 picture courtesy SLC
Charith Asalanka plays a shot during his innings of 91 picture courtesy SLC

Charith Asalanka made a fluent knock of 91 in 95 balls with 12 balls but that was in vain as Afghanistan recorded an easy six wicket win over Sri Lanka in their first ODI of the three match series played at Mahinda Rajapaksa International cricket stadium yesterday.

The architect of the Afghanistan victory was none other than opener Ibrahim Zadran who scored a run a ball 98 with 11 fours with two mighty sixes off debutant Matheesha Pathirana. Rahmat Shah also made a valuable knock of 55 in 80 balls with 3 fours while skipper Hashmastullah Shahidi scored useful 38 in 47 balls with 4 fours. Sri Lankan also conceded 30 extras including 22wides . Afghanistan reached their victory target of 269 with six wickets in hand in 46.5 overs to take a 1-0 series lead . In fact Sri Lanka used debutant Matheesha Pathirana who came from IPL but he was punished by Afghan players and gave away 66 runs in 8.5 over spell taking a solitary wicket while Kasun Rajitha took 2 for 49 in his 10over spell .

The debutant leg spinner Dushan Hemantha also went wicketless bowled 9 overs and gave away 50 runs . Earlier Afghanistan won the toss and decided to bowl first while Dimuth Karunaratne who came to the ODI team after two years and Pathum Nissanka came to bat but Karunaratne the experienced left hander was back in the pavilion in the third over bowled by paceman Fazalhaq Farooq . with second slip fielder Rahmat Shah taking a simple catch to dismiss Karunaratne.

Kusal Mendis joined Pathum Nissanka tried to repair the innings but Mendis made a pull shot in 9th over and square leg fielder Rahmat Shah took a catch to dismiss Mendis who scored 11 in 17 balls with 2 fours .The experienced Angelo Matthews couldn't stay long time scoring 12 in 21 balls . Pathum Nissanka ttried to play a long innings but unfortunately he was out for 38 in 59 balls with 5 fours and that prized wicket was taken by 22 year old off spinner Majeeb Ur Rahman and Sri Lanka were 84 for 4 wickets in 20 overs.

Charith Asalanka and Dhananjaya de Silva the two former Richmondites showed their capabilities to build up the total and put on a remarkable 99 run fifth wicket stand . Dhananjaya de Silva the experienced all rounder reached his fifty in 56 balls with 5 fours finally out for 51 in 59 balls when he was clean bolwed by Mohammed Nabi while Asalanka who got married last week took full responsibility on his shoulder played a solid innings but very disappointing run out nine runs away from a well deserved century and he struck 12 well compiled boundaries in his 95 ball innings was back to the pavilion in the last over of the innings.

The debutant Dushan Hemantha scored valuable 20 runs in 22 balls with a four and only six of the innings while last three wickets fell for the addition of only five runs to the total and Sri Lanka managed to get 268 all out in 50 overs with a run rate of 5.36.

Fazalhaq Farooq and Fareed Ahmad took two wickets each for Afghanistan.Sri Lanka and Afghanistan both played with out their key spinners Rashid khan and Wanindu Hasaranga while Maheesh Theekshana the mystery spinner also couldn't find a place yesterday and Dushan Hemantha took his ODI cap with Matheesha Pathirana.

The second ODI between the two teams will be played tomorrow at the same venue Mahinda Rajapaksa International cricket stadium while this game very vital for Sri Lanka team to equal the series Afghanistans Ibrahim Zadran was adjudged Man of the Match

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