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‘So close yet so far’ – Fans react as Afghanistan show amazing fight against Sri Lanka during first ODI

Pathum Nissanka also became the first ever player for Sri Lanka to register a double hundred in ODIs.

Afghanistan vs Sri Lanka

In a massive chase of 382 against Sri Lanka, Afghanistan came close to chasing down the total. All-rounders Azmatullah Omarzai as well as Mohammad Nabi came dangerously close to pulling off a robbery for their team. During the first ODI on Friday they displayed incredible skill for their side. At the Pallekele International Cricket Stadium, Sri Lanka prevailed by 42 runs despite the pair’s magnificent 242 run partnership.

Upon being requested to bat first, Sri Lanka amassed an incredible 381/3 in 50 overs. With an incredible effort, opener Pathum Nissanka (210*) emerged as the first batter from Sri Lanka to score two hundred in an ODI. He was assisted in the batting area by Sadeera Samarawickrama’s amazing cameo and Avishka Fernando’s 88 run contribution.

In a difficult chase, Afghanistan’s batting lineup crumbled under pressure, much like a deck of cards. After 8.3 overs, they found themselves out at 55/5 and looked deflated. But at this point, Mohammad Nabi and Azmatullah Omarzai teamed up and wrote one of the great comeback stories with a firm stance.

Omarzai gave another outstanding performance that left everyone in awe. He ended the match undefeated with a score of 149* (115). Nabi was dismissed during the 46th over for 136 (130). Afghanistan ultimately lost the chase by 42 runs because they received little assistance from other players in an ambitious effort.

“The pitch was a good one to bat” : Afghanistan captain Hashmatullah Shahidi

Afghanistan captain Hashmatullah Shahidi stated that the dew element affected his choice to bowl first during the toss at the post-match press conference. He believed that they gave up too many runs throughout the first innings using the ball and that the surface helped batting in both innings.

The Afghanistan skipper said, “The decision was due to the dew factor (on opting to bowl first). We were thinking that there would be dew in the second innings. The pitch was a good one to bat in the second innings as well.”

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