Nuwan Pradeep, Lasith Malinga bowl Sri Lanka to scrappy win


Two teams, both doing a lot of things wrong. In the end, Sri Lanka did just about enough right and got on the points table with a 34-run (DLS method) win, preventing Afghanistan from recording their first World Cup win over a full-member nation. In the process, they also ensured that Lasith Malinga finally figured in an ODI win after July 6, 2017 – he had been part of 21 losses and one no-result in between.
For Afghanistan, the day started well with the right call on the coin, but Hamid Hassan missed his lines and lengths completely upfront to concede 31 runs in his first two overs. Dawlat Zadran was better only in comparison and the ground fielding even worse than what Hassan dished out. If Afghanistan were in the contest despite all that, it was only due to one man: Mohammad Nabi. Nabi’s four wickets – including three in a chaotic over – put Sri Lanka in a hole they never quite got out of but rain and a revised target later, a batting effort even poorer than the Sri Lankans’ meant Afghanistan finished second best.

Summarized scores: Sri Lanka 201 (Kusal Perera 78, Nabi 4-30) beat Afghanistan 152 (Najibullah 43, Pradeep 4-31, Malinga 3-39) by 34 runs (via DLS method)

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