A shocked Sri Lanka fan during the side’s Asia Cup 2023 final against India.© Twitter
The Asia Cup 2023 final between Indian cricket team and Sri Lankan cricket team turned into a one-sided affair for the Rohit Sharma-led side, thanks to Mohammed Siraj. The 29-year-old right-arm pacer bowled the spell of his career so far as he scalped six wickets for 21 runs. He is now only the fourth Indian to scalp six wickets in an ODI after the great Anl Kumble, Jasprit Bumrah and Stuart Binny. Siraj’s fiery spell consisted one over in which he scalped four wickets – the first time an Indian has done so.
It was the fourth over of the match as Siraj, bowling his second over, broke the back of the Sri Lankan batting by scalping Pathum Nissanka, Sadeera Samarawickrama, Charith Asalanka and Dhananjaya de Silva. That over reduced Sri Lanka to 12/5 in four overs.
The Sri Lankan team was in shock as were the fans present at the R Premadasa Stadium. One such reaction of a fan has gone viral. ‘X’ handle @GemsOfCricket posted the image and it got over 1 lakh 24 thousand views. The image is a screengrab from Sunday’s Asia Cup final after the fourth over with the scoreboard showing 12/5.
After speedster Mohammed Siraj’s fiery spell decimated Sri Lanka, the opening duo of Shubman Gill and Ishan Kishan scored a flawless fifty-run partnership as India won the Asia Cup for the eighth time. Leading India’s fast bowling attack, Siraj ran through the Sri Lanka top-order in a dazzling performance in the summit clash at the R Premadasa Stadium in Colombo on Sunday.
It took a little more than two hours for India to lift the trophy in style. Sri Lanka fans were stunned into silence by their team’s performance. The Men in Blue lifted the Asia Cup trophy after five years.
Siraj had a dream spell as the entire Sri Lanka team was back in pavilion in 15.2 overs for 50 runs. Siraj took six wickets in seven overs, his best performance in ODIs.
Needing just 51 runs, Shubman Gill and Ishan Kishan made no mistakes and started with back-to-back boundaries off Matheesha Pathirana‘s over.
In the third over of the game, Gill sliced three successive boundaries off Pramod Madushan, taking India’s total to 32/0.
On the first delivery of 7th over, Kishan took a single and took India home with an assertive 10-wicket victory.
Jasprit Bumrah set the tone of the game by making his impact on the third ball of his first over. Siraj followed it up with a maiden over to lay the perfect platform for a spell that left the entire stadium awe-struck.
On the first ball of his second over, Siraj sent back Pathum Nissanka for 2. The second ball clicked 143 kmph and Samarawickrama decided to play it safe.
The third delivery, however, swung sharply back into the right-handed batter, pinned his legs right in front of the stumps and sent him back for a two-ball duck.
Sri Lanka’s match-winner against Pakistan, Charith Asalanka stepped in to keep Sri Lanka’s innings from falling apart.
Siraj baited him and lured him to play the drive shot. Asalanka took the bait and the ball went straight to Ishan Kishan at covers.
With hat-trick on his mind, Siraj once again tried to go for the inswinging delivery to the newcomer Dhananjaya de Silva. A gentle push on the vacant side of the field sent the ball for a four.
The pacer came back on the next delivery, found a faint edge and carried comfortably in the gloves of Rahul.
Siraj completed an over in which he took four wickets, something rare in ODI cricket and more so in a title match.
However, he wasn’t done yet, nor was his ‘Sui’ celebration. He shattered the stumps completely beating skipper Dausn Shanaka and sending him for a duck.
This was the first time India took six wickets in the first 10 overs in an ODI match.
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