Fri, 22 Sep 2023 Today's Paper

Worst-ever Sri Lanka performance at home gives India eighth Asia Cup title

17 September 2023 06:47 pm - 54     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}


If their Super 4 match earlier in the week was a slugfest – a contest taken into the late rounds between two teams that had their share of momentum before the better side won – Sunday's Asia Cup final was more a mismatch between two opponents in completely different weight classes, as heavyweights India completely battered, bruised, bloodied and bashed-in Sri Lanka’s flyweight batting line-up for an emphatic 10-wicket win.

Sri Lanka were bowled out for 50, an innings that lasted just 15.2 overs, as Mohammad Siraj ran through the home team’s top order, for figures of 6 for 13, before Hardik Pandya cleaned up the tail with three wickets.

In response, India barely broke a sweat as the tournament’s leading run scorer Shubman Gill and Ishan Kishan, promoted to open the batting, knocked off the total in 6.1 overs without losing a wicket as they claimed an eighth Asia Cup title.

It was Sri Lanka’s second worst total in ODIs after being bowled for 43 against South Africa in Paarl,South Africa in 2012, making this their worst defeat, and performance, at home in this format.

They would have taken heart from their performance against this same opposition on Tuesday, having bowled out one of the world’s best batting line ups for 212, before losing by 41 runs, a margin of victory that betrayed the actual close nature of the contest. But there was no doubt on Sunday that there was a significant difference in quality between the two teams, one making a strong claim as a veritable favourite for the Cricket World Cup, and the other left scratching their heads ahead of the game’s showpiece event.

Among the questions that will now need to be answered is that of the future of team captain, Dasun Shanaka, whose merit for a place in the team, leave alone his position as captain, has been questioned amidst a poor run of form with the bat, and the strength of this particular batting line-up, or rather the need to add to it. 

That this embarrassing defeat came in front of a capacity Premadasa crowd was even more disappointing, with Sri Lankan supporters hardly given a moment to celebrate – a far cry from the delirium seen in these very stand during Thursday’s win against Pakistan – instead sitting in silence as the home team’s batsmen were left clueless against a high quality pace bowling attack.

It didn’t help that when Shanaka won the toss, he chose to bat under bright, sunny skies, but when openers Kusal Janith Perera and Pathum Nissanka walked out to face the first over, they did so under heavily overcast conditions, after the innings was delayed by 40 minutes due to a heavy drizzle.

Those conditions played into the Indian pace bowlers’ hands, an unbelievable piece of fortune for the Indian captain Rohit Sharma, who had expressed a desire for his team to have batted had he won the toss.

For all the success that Siraj would go on to have, it was Jasprit Bumrah who made the first breakthrough, as Kusal Janith Perera swiped at a delivery moving away from him, and edging through to keeper KL Rahul on the third ball of the innings.

Siraj then teased what was about to follow, when he beat Kusal Mendis’ outside edge four times in his first over, with the right-arm fast bowler repeatedly dropping the ball into the perfect line and length and proving unplayable even for Sri Lanka’s most in-form batsman.

He then began his incision into Sri Lanka’s top order, dismissing Pathum Nissanka on the first ball of his second over, the opener pushing the ball to backward point, where Ravindra Jadeja scooped up a dying catch, and then trapping Sadeera Samarawickrama leg before wicket two balls later.

Charith Asalanka then picked out the fielder at cover on the next delivery, when he aimlessly pushed at a ball outside off stump, Sri Lanka slumping to 8 for 4.

Facing the hat-trick ball, Dhananjaya de Silva confidently punched Siraj for a boundary to long-off, but it would prove a day when even he could not be the hero, edging the next delivery behind for Rahul to take an easy catch.

Siraj completed his first-ever five-wicket haul in his next over, beating Shanaka’s defense and clattering into his stumps, the home team on 12 for 6 at that point -- taking four of wickets in one over.

A partnership of 21 between Kusal Mendis and Dunith Wellalage only prolonged what always appeared inevitable – Sri Lanka posting a total that would be nowhere in the realm of defendable – when Siraj had his sixth wicket six overs later, breaching Mendis’ defense.

25 balls later, the innings was wrapped up, with Hardik Pandya claiming the wickets of Wellalage, Pramod Madushan and Matheesha Pathirana, for the addition of 17 runs.  

(Shehan Daniel at the R. Premadasa Stadium)

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  Comments - 54

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  • ACL Sunday, 17 September 2023 07:11 PM

    Disgraceful. The SL women's team would have done a better job. Shocking 50 runs.. it was cake walk for India.

    Jude Sunday, 17 September 2023 07:22 PM


    Kariyawasam Sunday, 17 September 2023 07:23 PM

    How can all eleven Sri Lankan players flop in a single cricket match ? So the problem can not be lack of talent, but something else and has to be systemic. It is actually to do with psychology, “ Fear of India “. When the country is sucking up to India, the President is calling for Hindi to be introduced in schools , when the Strategic electric GRID is being connected across to India, and the Politicians are scared to even question India for selling “ killer medical drugs” to Sri Lanka; then how can you expect the Sri Lankan cricket players to have the CONFIDENCE to fight the Indians in the cricket field . There is a saying “ the person who wins at the Wimbledon finals is not necessarily the talented but definitely the most confident “. But with India Sri Lanka has ZERO confidence.

    Ravi Sankar Vaddi Sunday, 17 September 2023 09:21 PM

    Dear Kariyawasam, please take the loss with Humility and work for better performance if SL. Every time SL looses to India, don't attribute to political and social reasons. It is India who helped SL multiple times when ever the Island faced financial crisis, natural disasters. Grow up.

    Ranil Monday, 18 September 2023 08:35 AM

    @Kariyawasam, Cricketers that flop are the norm just like every other Sri Lankan politician since 1948. It is because our cricketers flopped is why our ICC status was delayed until the 1980's when the ICC status could have been won much quicker. Go read the history of cricket in a book titled "Island's Eleven" by Nicholas Brookes.

    An Angry Cricket Lover Sunday, 17 September 2023 07:26 PM

    Sri Lanka with a population of 22.0 million has 26 First Division Cricket teams while India with a population of 1400.0 million has only 38 First Division (Ranji Trophy) temas. SLC increased the number of First Division Teams to 26 get votes when the election for the SLC Executive Committee is held. Well done SLC. Keep on doing your corrupt activities ruining Sri Lankan cricket.

    Jude Sunday, 17 September 2023 07:30 PM

    Who's responsible for the latest debacle and the meltdown by Lankan cricket team!!???

    Jude Sunday, 17 September 2023 07:33 PM

    I've a hunch that whole team took money to throw the game!!

    Udugama Sunday, 17 September 2023 07:37 PM

    Hey Ranil, now take a trip to India and join in their victory celebrations . You traitor !!!!!! We Need Someone Like Arujuna Ranatunga to bring pride into our country. IPL has DESTROYED the Sri Lankan Cricket by taking the national pride out of the players and replaced by big money from India. Indians have bought all our senior players that is why all are keeping quiet except Arujuna.

    Jude Sunday, 17 September 2023 07:41 PM

    SLC should with hold the players match fees until they make an inquiry into the latest drubbing!! But bookies paid them handsomely, yeah!!

    Jude Sunday, 17 September 2023 07:44 PM

    I reiterate, for SL players winning is not utmost priority,!!

    Terrence K Sunday, 17 September 2023 07:47 PM

    Congratulations India! Repeatedly our professional cricketers have blundered in many matches when the field setting has changed. A cardinal principle is when the opposing team sets three or four slips behind the wicket our players are impatient by sticking their bat to every ball and definitely even the best players fall prey to this strategy. Always Kusal Mendis, Kusal Perera openers just throw their wickets when slips are in place. This is an eye opener for the Coach and Captain to groom all batters not to fall for this strategy. Sri Lanka have batters who should maintain from the beginning the momentum which gives the other players mindsets to be consistent. There are many things to be learnt from defeat as we are approaching the World Cup. So Boys correct the mistakes for better performances.

    Uncle Paradise Sunday, 17 September 2023 08:04 PM

    Something drastically weird happened. Yet, we still support our team -- we are Runners Up! See you at the WC final boys!

    S. Balendiran Sunday, 17 September 2023 08:06 PM

    UK Prime minister Indian Singapure President Tamil in Srilanka even not a single person from other community not allowed to play Cricket for Srilanka. We are happy because minorities can’t play for Srilanka . What a racist country.

    This is reality Sunday, 17 September 2023 08:14 PM

    Great disappointment for Sri Lanka cricket fans no doubt. But all will be forgotten in a couple of weeks when the World Cup starts. So we should not write off our boys immediately. By then our full team will be ready. But word of caution to Dasun.

    Mohan Sunday, 17 September 2023 08:19 PM

    This kind of things happen even to good teams at times. India got all out for 36 at Melbourne against Australia. India got all out for 54 against Sri Lanka at Sharjah in 2000. So, shouldn't take it seriously. But, I hope this propels the SL batters to identify any technical deficiencies and come out better.

    VJ Sunday, 17 September 2023 08:25 PM

    Congratulations team India on winning the Asia cup 2023 championship.

    Crick dan Sunday, 17 September 2023 08:34 PM

    Did they get the numbers wrong?

    Amith Sunday, 17 September 2023 08:35 PM

    Don't loose heart guys. Let's support team SL. Delighted by the gesture of financial support to groundsmen....this was so hearttouching. Really appreciate it...SL will comeback stronger in WC

    Nimal Vass Sunday, 17 September 2023 08:58 PM

    Well, is this a repeat of world cup finals between two countries? Recently at parliament politicians admitted it was given to India for money.

    Mohan Sunday, 17 September 2023 08:58 PM

    @Balendiran: I don't know if your claim has some truth, but I believe if you have talent, you can play. Muralitharan, Russel Arnold, T.M. Dilshan, Maharoof, Navid Nawas and Angelo Mathews are some of the minority players to have played for the national team.

    Asanga Sunday, 17 September 2023 09:25 PM

    The rot has spread everywhere in the country. No point in blaming amateurs who have more tattoos than runs or wickets for this abysmal performance.

    Son of a CID officer Sunday, 17 September 2023 09:26 PM

    @ Nimal Vass, what you say is true. The World Cup final you are talking about was given free to India. This was why our CID was interrogating Kumar Sangakkara and Mahila Jeyawardana for hours until Namal intervened and stoppers the interrogations. It breaks my heart to realise how “ A match winning cricket culture “ carefully built by Captain Arujuna was gradually destroyed over the years by the “Indian bribes” to the captains and players of Sri Lankan cricket teams from roughly 2000 onwards.

    Karalasingam Sivalingam Sunday, 17 September 2023 09:48 PM

    Bad decision to permit Sri Lanka to bat first , had India batted first, they would have scored over 300 and got tired, then we would have had , a better chance. Indian bolling was terrible, fast and accurate, our team has lost its reputation.

    Vedha Sunday, 17 September 2023 10:40 PM

    Refer the comment from Akram. He said " it looks like the team came with a game plan from the dressing room" this is an interesting comment. There is something wrong. It cannot be confidence...indian team knew they are going to be challenged after the defeat from Bangladesh. So as otters says there is some politics behind. Not a single team having such a good recored can be beaten cheaply at home grounds. How come the captain won the toss and elected to bat knowing that we are good in chasing with proven record

    hoodwinker Sunday, 17 September 2023 10:43 PM

    It is rather LATE and diabolic , why is the Board still keeping Chanaka at the helm ? he has failed in his many an opportunity to score runs, although he is a good captain.

    Ramkumar Sunday, 17 September 2023 10:45 PM

    Ball swing is the main reason.srilankan mentally weak in home ground I don't know super star in srilankan team nowadays.before all are superb i afraid of sanath jayasurya batting.vas dilsan de Silva sanga kaluwiththarana that mi coach name? Now they lack confidence.

    Bandu Sunday, 17 September 2023 10:46 PM

    Cricket or any sport has ups and downs. Yes Sri Lanka's 50 all out is also the lowest score by any team in a men's ODI final. The previous lowest was India's 54 against Sri Lanka in the 2000 Champions Trophy final. That's it in any game. All is not lost.

    Anthony. R Sunday, 17 September 2023 10:50 PM

    A humiliating, and embarrassing defeat for sure, but ,could it be a fix? Whatever. They should include the chairman of SLC, and the chairman of Selectors to the team. Similar defeat to India in a final happened not very long ago,where the then president of SriLanka was also present at the match.

    Gerry Gunaratne Sunday, 17 September 2023 11:00 PM

    It’s very possible that Sri Lanka sold the match, for Indian eggs. This is what happen in the previous World Cup too under Sangakara’s captaincy . That time it was not the team decided the outcome of the match, it was decided by the Rajapaksa’s to please India. We are pretty sure Rajapaksa’s handsomely rewarded for giving away the match.

    Jayantha Sunday, 17 September 2023 11:38 PM

    Our batting weakness got exposed here. Specially our guys struggled on good batting tracks. Generally on good tracks too our top order manage to get around only 200. So when the pitch has unexpected swing or spin the top order stuggle even more. This is why they manage to get only one fourth of it. To be honest SL plays with only 5 batters as both Dasun and Dananjaya are weak players when it comes to batting. Check the averages of the two and you will see why it never ever improves. So if non of the top five scores we miss our lowest target 200 and this is what really happens. So what needs to happen is get a good batting coach who can correct technical issues and teach the players on adapting based on condition.

    Onlooker Monday, 18 September 2023 12:04 AM

    Everything is changeable. SL had a top team but now it is a shadow. So were the West Indians unbeatable in the mid 70's and early 80's. But now ? So was Australia with greats like Border Ponting McGrath Warne. But now mediocre. Everything changes.

    Tenuwera Monday, 18 September 2023 02:22 AM

    What a disgraceful performance. It would have been a better Final if Pakistan or Bangladesh played instead of us! I felt sorry for our bowlers, especially for the young ones. They have been doing a tremendous job against all odds. However most of the time, our batsmen have been stupid, brainless and gutless. Consistency is not in their DNA. As for the captain, he is a total liability! Captains are supposed to lead from the front. This captain is constantly bringing up the rear! One wonders for what nefarious reason, he continues to be in the team, when he is such an abject failure. If he cares anything at all about Sri Lanka cricket, he should do the decent thing and resign. Sadly, resigning is not in the Sri Lankan DNA, whether it is politics, sport or anything else. No wonder the country is awash with corruption and in such an almighty mess!

    Rev. Rohan Soysa Ratmalana Monday, 18 September 2023 04:16 AM

    It's like the Easter carnage. Fipty all out. Warns political and religious leaders too. Especially cardinalaya who slept with Maina. Cricket needs clean administration. Religious political platform has to be completely rebuilt.

    A Cricket Lover Monday, 18 September 2023 04:49 AM

    Sri Lankan Cricketers' performance has deteriorated to a very great extent thanks to SLC. Australia with a population of 25.0 million and over 500 Schools playing high-level cricket, has only 6 First Division teams. India with a population of 1400.0 million has only 38 teams. Sri Lanka with only a population of 22.0 million and less than 10 schools playing cricket at a reasonable level has 26 First Division teams. SLC increased the number of teams to 26 to get votes during SLC Elections. The corrupt and inept SLC must be dissolved, the number of First Division teams must be reduced to no more than 8, and fair elections for SLC must be held under a new Constitution, Unless this is done, Sri Lankan Cricket will be going down the hill. President of Sri Lanka; Use your power and do that.

    wsw Monday, 18 September 2023 04:50 AM

    @Ravi Sankar Vaddi, sadly everything stated by Kariyawasam is factual. Sri Lanka, once a proud independent nation with its own unique identity in the sub-continent, spanning over 2500 years, has simply gone rapidly backwards, due to corrupt, dishonest, selfish, inefficient, politicians who have ruined our identity and pride but still continue with impunity. Cricket in our tiny island nation, once mighty in stature, is currently on its knees, genuflecting before the BCCI begging for money, all to support the lavish lifestyles of officials and not certainly towards the betterment of the game. Ironically, we Sri Lankans see striking similarities between the Lankan cricket board and the politicians in power or even the opposition, all contributing towards the detriment of our beloved motherland.

    wsw Monday, 18 September 2023 04:53 AM

    @This is reality- really mate? Just be realistic, this team is rapidly dragging the image and pride of the nation to the dumps. Sad but true.

    wsw Monday, 18 September 2023 05:05 AM

    @Asanga- I add' No point in blaming amateurs who have more tattoos and a rather prominent beard, but no runs or wickets.

    D K Rai Monday, 18 September 2023 06:11 AM

    SL team did well to reach the final. It wasn't their day at finals. That can happen to any team. But well played Siraj. Your gesture towards is much appreciated.

    Sambo Monday, 18 September 2023 08:33 AM

    Would you say proud to be a Sri Lankan. The team must be disband ant. Afghanistan would have given the spectators a better treat.

    Dev Monday, 18 September 2023 08:57 AM

    An independent inquiry should be done to assess the debacle as there could be other elements in play here.

    cricketer Monday, 18 September 2023 09:07 AM

    After having very close calls against Afghanistan Bangladesh and Pakistan and losing to India twice in the preliminaries Sri Lanka was very lucky to make it to the finals of the Asia Cup and a defeat to India in the finals was inevitable The Sri Lanka Men's Cricket team fared even worst than the Sri Lanka Women's Cricket team in England last week and were bundled out for 50 runs in 15 overs and india scored the runs in just 6 overs making a mockery of the Asia Cup Finals 2023.

    Dr Harinder Singh Bedi Monday, 18 September 2023 09:47 AM

    Heartiest congratulations India. Sri Lanka - don't lose hope - you are still the 2nd best in Asia . I have visited Sri Lanka and know that they are hard working proud talented people . This too shall pass

    rbh Monday, 18 September 2023 09:56 AM

    The competition gives me energy. It keeps me focused if no competition no one will visit the ground.

    Man Monday, 18 September 2023 10:15 AM

    SLC ≡ Economically stabilized SL after many borrowing and taxing by sparring their business friends by Ranil Rajapaksha. Winning Asia cup / World cup ≡ SL is a developed country in 2048.

    Leo Mendis - SL Cricket Lover from Moratuwa Monday, 18 September 2023 11:08 AM

    First of all, our Captain Dasun Shanaka should be kicked out from all three formats and replaced with Mendis. Honestly, he did not farewell in any other matches with the bat or ball and his fielding too was too bad.

    Hendry Samuel Monday, 18 September 2023 11:09 AM

    Our village schoolboys would have played better Cricket than our National Team Players. What a shame... all these idiots should be replaced for the World Cup.

    Russel Harmmer Monday, 18 September 2023 11:12 AM

    Totally very poor performance our guys showed with the batting and bowling. A complete change is needed before we go for the World cup. Congratulations to Rohith and his boys.

    Dr. P.K. Samarakoon Monday, 18 September 2023 11:15 AM

    With these fellows if we face the World cup, we may not get a plastic cup even. What a shameful performance. Shanaka should be thrown out first from SLC.

    Dr. K.M. Ratnayake Monday, 18 September 2023 11:17 AM

    While appointing a sloppy Sports Minister by Ranil we knew what will happen to our sportsman. This is the first lesson and some more to follow, unless our sports minister is thrown out along with his captain Shanaka.

    D.K. Lal Fernando - Former Cricket Coach Monday, 18 September 2023 11:23 AM

    OK we lost badly the entire world knows about it by now. By the way, where is our Sports Minister, we have not seen him for any matches at least for the Asian Cup Finals. Is he house arrested?

    Shockman Roxstan Monday, 18 September 2023 11:26 AM

    Except Mendis along with Pathirana and Wellalage all others should be chased out from our team, if our team to win one or two matches in the world cup.

    Bannis Mama Monday, 18 September 2023 11:29 AM

    If India would have lost like this - by now all the players houses would have been burnt. Well, some spectators were planning to do the same thing to our players houses but then the idea was changed as they are waiting to burn our Potuwa politicians' houses which were left out last time.

    A Frustrated Cricket Fan Monday, 18 September 2023 12:02 PM

    It is obvious that it is SLC that destroyed Sri Lankan cricket by increasing the number of First Division Teams from 8 to 26 to get votes during SLC elections. The current First Division Teams in Sri Lanka are even weaker than SCHOOL cricket teams in Australia. The only way to improve Sri Lankan cricket is to dissolve the SLC, decrease the number of First Division Teams to about 8, and hold the SLC Election under a new Constitution. Unless these are done, nobody can prevent the destruction of the Sri Lankan Cricket.

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