Sri Lanka will be eyeing an unassailable lead in the 3-match ODI series as they take on hosts Pakistan at the Gadaffi Stadium today (Monday).
Ater registering their first win of the tour, Sri Lanka will be quietly confident when the two teams meet again in the second of the three-match T20I series at Lahore’s Gaddafi stadium.
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Danushka Gunathalika scored a well-crafted 57 to guide Sri Lanka to 165/5 in 20 overs, before the bowlers put on a complete performance to bundle out Sri Lanka for 101 in the 18th over to register an emphatic 64-run win. They will now look to carry the same intensity going forward to seal the series in the second game.
Pakistan did manage to halt Sri Lanka’s progress in the final overs, thanks to a hat-trick from 19-year-old Mohammad Hansnain, but it was their batting effort that cost them the game. Veterans Ahmed Shehzad and Umar Akmal, each making their international comebacks, failed to leave a mark, with the latter registering a first-ball duck.
The hosts will need a strong performance from their experienced top four, led by the dynamic Babar Azam, the top ranked batsman in MRF Tyres ICC T20I rankings, to stage a comeback and set up the final game as a series decider on Wednesday, 9 October.
“In T20s we can’t take any team lightly. Credit to them, they kept it tight with the ball and in the field in the middle overs. We didn’t have a good day with the ball, but at one stage it looked like they would get to 170-180 and Hasnain brought us back well. God willing, we’ll do well in the next game,” says Sarfaraz Ahmed, Pakistan captain.
Dasun Shanaka, Sri Lanka captain added, “It’s a great achievement without our top guns to beat them here. Our openers did a tremendous job for us. We had belief that once all the boys perform we’ll win games.”
Teams batting first have won four of the last five games played at Gaddafi Stadium.
Fans can catch the action LIVE on SonyLiv, Sony Six and Sony Six HD. Fans on the move can also catch the LIVE steaming on Jio TV and Airtel TV. The match as per Indian time will start at 6:30 pm (7:00 pm local time) on Saturday.