Brisbane: Sri Lanka knock Afghanistan out of the T20 World Cup after handing them a crushing 6-wicket loss at the Gabba in the ongoing T20 World Cup.
Buoyed by the match-winning knock of Dhananjaya de Silva and Wanindu Hasaranga's three wicket haul, Sri Lanka registered their second win of the tournament to keep their T20 World Cup dream alive. Chasing the target, Sri Lankan openers made a slow start to their inning. Pathum Nissanka was dismissed in the second over to draw first blood for Afghanistan. The batter was dismissed for 10(10).
Dhananjaya de Silva and Kusal Mendis then stitched a 34-run partnership or the second wicket, before Afghanistan's trump card Rashid Khan came in the eighth over to dismiss Mendis. He scored 25 off 27 balls before beinfdismissed by Rashid.
Charith Asalanka joined Dhananjaya at the crease and the duo took the attack to the Afghan bowlers after a slow start and plundered their bolwers for runs as they shared a crucial 54-ru stan dfor the third wicket.
Dhananjaya and Aslanka punished the Afghan bowlers for deviating away from their line and lengths and helped give Sri Lankan inning the much-needed impetus.
Rashid khan was taken to the cleanes after Dhananjaya smashed the bowler for a six and a four in the 11th over. Mohammad Nabi was dealth in the same fashion as Dhananjaya struck him for a six too in the 12th over.
The partnership was finally broken by Rashid in the 14th over, as he dimissed Asalanka for 19(18).
Bhanuka Rajapaksa joined Dhananjaya at the crease and went after the bowlers right from the word go, smashing a boundary on his very first ball. The batter struck three boundaries in his brief stay of 18(14) and could not take the team over the line.
Dhananjaya de Silva however made sure that the team does not suffer any hiccups and took his team over the line, smashing a superb boundary inthe 19th over.
Earlier, Sri Lankan bowlers delivered a superb bowling performance to restrict Afghanistan to 144/8 following Wanindu Hasaranga's three-wicket haul at the Gabba.
Opting to bat first, the Afghan inning started cautiously with openers Rahmanullah Gurbaz and Usman Ghani seeing off the new ball. Gurbaz sensed the need to score runs and took the initiative to attack the Sri Lankan bowlers.
However, the team kept losing wickets at regular intervals to post a paltry total of 144/8.
Wanindu Hasaranga was announced the 'Player of the Match' for his superb bowling performance.
Brief Score: Sri Lanka 148/4 (Dhananjaya de Silva 66, Kusal Mendis 25; Mujeeb Ur Rahman 2/24) vs Afghanistan 144/8 (Rahmanullah Gurbaz 28, Usman Ghani 27; Wanindu Hasaranga 3/13)