Bangladesh defeated Sri Lanka in their own den. The Lions losing to India was somewhat alright. I mean it is India. And the current team is one of the best teams in the world. They also defeated South Africa in South Africa. But Sri Lanka losing to Bangladesh in Sri Lanka will be extremely hard to digest. A lot of people were surprised. Now I have the habit of rooting for the underdogs and I had a feeling that Bangladesh had it in them. It was nice to be able to tell others, “I told you that Bangladesh could win”.
|Mushfiqur Rahim held back his celebrations until the winning runs were stroked|
What did happen? Sri Lanka came in to bat first and hit a solid 214 runs in 20 overs. It was a very good score indeed. Perera’s 74 along with Kusal Mendis’s 57 took the runs to a competitive level. It seemed like a sure-fire win for the lions. A very fair assumption to make too.
And then came in Bangladesh. From the word go, they were on the track to victory. The first wicket fell at 74. Second at 100. Third at 151. By the time the fifth wicket fell, the contributions made by the Bangladesh batsmen (Tamim Iqbal - 47, Liton Das - 43, M Rahim - 72) mattered significantly. Bangladesh defeated Sri Lanka by five wickets.
It was the fourth highest successful run chase in the history of T20I cricket and the highest in Sri Lanka with the previous best being Pakistan's 178 for two against Bangladesh during the World T20 in 2012 at Pallekele.
Easy to make remarks and offer advice in hindsight. Sri Lanka’s bowling was below par. That was the reason probably. M Rahim’s 35-ball 72 helped take the team to the finish line. The match-winning total was chased down by the visitors, with two deliveries to spare. Making the tournament wide open now. It was assumed to be an India - Sri Lanka finals. You will have to think again, won’t you?