Pakistan vs Sri Lanka match played on October 10, 2023, at Hyderabad 1. This match is a day/night fixture and will start at 2:00 PM local time.
Pakistan 345 for 4 beat Sri Lanka 344 for 9 by six wickets
Pakistan vs Sri Lanka Highlight
Sri Lanka received a stark lesson in the dynamics of modern ODI cricket as Pakistan successfully chased down a target of 345, marking the highest-ever chase in World Cup history with six wickets to spare.
Spearheading the Pakistani charge were centuries from Abdullah Shafique and Mohammad Rizwan, overshadowing the impressive centuries by Kusal Mendis and Sadeera Samarawickrama for Sri Lanka, securing Pakistan’s second consecutive win in the tournament.
Rizwan, battling seemingly debilitating cramps, enduring the physio’s attention twice in the last 15 overs of the chase, concluded unbeaten with a remarkable 121-ball 131.
His formidable partnership with Shafique, who set a new record for the highest score by a Pakistan debutant in a World Cup with his 113 off 103, reached a pivotal 176 runs off just 156 deliveries, effectively breaking the backbone of Sri Lanka’s chase.
Even with this formidable partnership, the victory might have eluded Pakistan if not for Rizwan’s tenacity in staying till the end. He continued to contribute, adding a further 95 runs off 68 balls with Saud Shakeel, and then 37 off 23 with Iftikhar Ahmed. Pakistan comfortably sailed to victory, gaining a significant confidence boost for their upcoming clash against India.
For Sri Lanka, it’s a disheartening tale with two defeats in as many games. The bowlers’ struggles in managing batter-friendly tracks raised concerns, conceding over 750 runs across two matches. Despite Maheesh Theekshana’s return, the team seemed clueless about picking up wickets in the middle overs or stifling the scoring.
England vs Bangladesh Match click here
Theekshana, Dunith Wellalage, and Dilshan Madushanka, the most economical among them, each went for 59, 62, and 60 runs, respectively. Matheesha Pathirana, once again, proved expensive, conceding 90 runs in nine overs.
Pakistan strategically capitalized on Sri Lanka’s need to fulfill the fifth bowler quota, exploiting Dasun Shanaka for just 28 runs in five overs, while Dhananjaya de Silva conceded 36 in four overs, and Charith Asalanka gave away 10 in his solitary over.
The match highlighted the widening gap in adaptability and execution between the two teams in the evolving landscape of ODI cricket.
Pakistan will find satisfaction in the methodical approach employed during the chase. Despite Sri Lanka securing two wickets and limiting the score to just 48 in the initial 10 overs, Pakistan remained circumspect.
Aware of the presence of power hitters like Shadab Khan, Iftikhar, and Mohammed Nawaz in the lower order, both Shafique and Rizwan opted to play themselves in, displaying a strategic and patient approach.
However, between the 10th and 20th overs, the duo amassed 62 runs before significantly accelerating in the middle phase. From the 20th to the 30th over, they added another 72 runs, followed by plunder of 99 runs from the 30th to the 40th over, setting up a reachable target of 74 runs off the last 60 deliveries.
Shafique’s remarkable control percentage of 91% revealed a tale of dominance, as he thwarted any chances for the Sri Lankan bowlers, seizing opportunities with short deliveries and displaying fearless footwork when required.
His dismissal, a stunning catch at backward point by substitute Dushan Hemantha (standing in for Kusal Mendis, who was off the field with severe cramps), required an absolute scorcher.
Fortunately for Pakistan, Rizwan, a true warrior at the crease, stood firm at the other end, ensuring a hiccup-free completion of the chase.
On the flip side, Sri Lanka will lament a missed opportunity to seal the game with the bat, with Shanaka acknowledging after the match that they fell short by about 30 runs. Despite winning the toss and opting to bat first, for a considerable part of the Sri Lankan innings, it seemed like the cohesive batting performance they had long promised.
In warm-up matches against Afghanistan and Bangladesh, they squandered promising starts, while against South Africa, glimpses of their batting prowess emerged.
The next step, however, was to string it all together, and for substantial periods of their innings in Hyderabad, it looked like Sri Lanka was finally achieving that.
While Sri Lanka’s struggles in the death overs and the middle phase are well-documented having only posted 12 scores above 300 since the end of the 2019 World Cup in Hyderabad, they batted like a team with a century of such performances under their belt.
Throughout their 50 overs, the scoring rate rarely dipped below seven an over and, at times, touched 7.5. Much credit went to Mendis, who continued his impressive form from the South Africa match, though at a slightly lower strike rate of 158.44 this time, almost single-handedly challenging a typically formidable Pakistan bowling attack.
With both Shaheen Shah Afridi and Hasan Ali consistently bowling in the low 130s or lower, any early swing something Mendis has struggled against in the past was navigated with relative ease.
Throughout his time at the crease, scarcely an overpassed without a boundary. From his arrival midway through the second over until his dismissal in the 29th, only six overs went by without at least one boundary being scored.
Among the bowlers, only Iftikhar Ahmed found some success against Mendis, conceding six runs in eight deliveries. However, Mendis struck at a rate above 140 against all five other bowlers used.
Alongside him, Samarawickrama continued his form since breaking into the Sri Lankan side. He maneuvered around for singles and twos, used his feet against spinners for his inside-out drive off Nawaz for six standing out, and expertly worked the gaps for boundaries when needed.
Samarawickrama and Mendis formed a formidable partnership, contributing 111 runs off just 69 deliveries, marking the second consecutive century stand of the innings following Mendis’ earlier collaboration with Pathum Nissanka.
With Mendis’s dismissal at 218 with only 29 overs bowled, Sri Lanka had their sights on reaching at least 350. However, their plans were derailed once again.
Eight balls after Mendis’s departure, Charith Asalanka, the key figure in the previous game against South Africa, edged one. This was followed by a five-over period in which only 18 runs were scored, stifling their momentum. Overs 30-40 added 54 runs in total.
Pakistan, however, inflicted the most damage in the final 10 overs, restricting Sri Lanka to just 61 runs, including the last three overs that yielded only 13 runs.
The efficiency with which Samarawickrama and Mendis batted through the middle overs allowed Sri Lanka to reach 344—their highest against a Full Member nation since 2020. Yet, these are the fine margins at play, and Sri Lanka must address them swiftly to keep their slim semi-final hopes alive.