Afghanistan will remember CWC 2023 as their biggest turning point in their cricketing history. Sri Lanka stunned every playing nation with their huge CWC win in 1996. South Africa made a huge statement with 1992 CWC. India won in 1983 and Pakistan, suddenly, won in 1992 against all odds. Now, Afghanistan is making serious inroads in this world cup.
They won against England for the first time in 2023. After running them close in 2019, Afghanistan won against Pakistan with 8 wickets remaining. Again, they won against another Asian Giant, Sri Lanka while chasing with 7 wickets, remaining. With back-to-back successful chases, they have made strong statements as an emerging cricketing nation.
Afghanistan have won the toss and elected to field first. They restricted Sri Lanka, who looked conservative in the first 10 overs. Pathum Nissanka(46), Kusal Mendis(39), Sadeera Samarawickrama(36) and Maheesh Theekshana(29) scored well for Sri Lanka. Rest all did not seem to be settled. Sri Lanka scored 241 all-out in 49.3 overs. Fazalhaq Farooqi(4/34), Mujeeb Ur Rahman(2/38), Azmatullah Omarzai(1/37) and Rashid Khan(1/50) took wickets for AFG.
In the chase, AFG lost Rahmanullah Gurbaz(0), early in the first over. Ibrahim Zadran(39) and Rahmat Shah(62) have put on a great partnership to ease off the nerves. Captain Hashmatullah Shahidi(58) and Azmatullah Omarzai(73) took the team to a big win. They scored 242/3 in 45.2 overs. Dilshan Madushanka(2/48) and Kasun Rajitha(1/48) took wickets. Sri Lanka has almost spoiled their chances to qualify. They will play India in their next match while Afghanistan will play Netherlands.