Pakistan vs Sri Lanka ICC CWC Match 8 Report: In the ICC Men’s World Cup 2023, Pakistan clinched their second consecutive victory by making a remarkable chase of Sri Lanka’s 345-run target. This historic win goes down in the annals of the ODI Cricket World Cup as the highest successful chase ever recorded.
A Rocky Start
Pakistan’s pursuit of the target got off to a rocky start when Imam-ul-Haq departed early, adding to their early woes. Even though Babar Azam briefly ignited the crowd with a boundary off his first ball, his departure came swiftly, as he nicked one down the leg side, leaving Pakistan with only 10 runs on the scoreboard at his exit. By the end of the powerplay, Pakistan had mustered a modest 48 runs, and the focus shifted towards rebuilding the innings after these early setbacks.
Pakistan’s approach, marked by a cautious game plan, unintentionally increased the required run rate. However, Abdullah Shafique and Mohammad Rizwan showcased impressive composure by diligently rotating the strike while finding the occasional boundary. At the halfway point of the match, Pakistan needed to score 207 runs from 150 balls. It was at this juncture that the two batsmen decided to up the ante.
Matheesha Pathirana had a forgettable day and bore the brunt of their attack, with both batsmen hitting boundaries off his bowling. Shafique took on Dunith Wellalage, dispatching him for a four and a six, pushing Pakistan’s run rate beyond six for the first time in the chase.
The Breakthroughs in the Death Overs
However, Pakistan staged a series of breakthroughs during the death overs. Mohammad Nawaz claimed his first wicket with the dismissal of Dhananjaya de Silva, while Shaheen Afridi removed the skipper, Dasun Shanaka. Samarawickrama managed to reach a century, a milestone he had not achieved before in his ODI career. However, his dismissal with two overs remaining marked a significant turning point, as Pakistan conceded a mere 9 runs from the final 12 deliveries. This disciplined effort at the end of the innings, limiting Sri Lanka to only 50 runs in the last nine overs, ultimately made the difference.
Pakistan vs Sri Lanka ICC CWC Match 8 Report: Score Summary
344/9 in 50 overs (Kusal Mendis 122, Sadeera Samarawickrama 108; Hasan Ali 4/71)
345/4 in 18.2 overs (Mohammad Rizwan 131*, Abdullah Shafique 113; Dilshan Madushanka 2/60)
Result: Pakistan won by six wickets.