Through their cricket team, Sri Lanka, a country that has been pining for any measure of happiness, received a significant reason to celebrate on Sunday. Bhanuka Rajapaksa’s masterful unbeaten 71 off 45 and Wanindu Hasaranga’s all-around performance (36 off 21 & 3/27) showed how one could turn difficulty into opportunity as Sri Lanka walked away with the Asia Cup title by convincingly defeating Pakistan by 23 runs, just as the nation was looking for heroes.
Due to the ongoing political and financial turmoil, the tournament was relocated from Sri Lanka to the United Arab Emirates. They at least succeeded in reclaiming their status as a cricketing powerhouse from the Indian subcontinent on Sunday. The so-called “Lions” were once more cheering as Chamika Karunaratne struck Haris Rauf’s stumps with the final delivery of the game.
Once they gained momentum, they pursued Pakistan’s batting order like a pack of wolves searching for prey, fielding valiantly and bowling with meticulous precision. Babar was out for five when he flicked the ball to short fine-leg, and Mohammed Rizwan threw his bat at the other end in anger. Pakistan never really recovered after being under siege.