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“The rise of Afgnaistan cricket”, Twitter reacts as Afghanistan defeat Sri Lanka in the first ODI

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Farooqi is yelling about in joy and his pals swarm him. A clinical triumph for the visitors, Afghanistan. Spare a thought for Hasaranga however. Solo counterattacked at the tail end to keep his team in the game, but he was the last player to remain at the crease.

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Sri Lanka never had a problem maintaining a strong run rate, scoring at a steady pace even when wickets were lost, but the wickets column was a major problem for them. While a loss by 60 runs in an ODI isn’t unheard of, getting bowled out in just 38 overs is sure to sting for the Sri Lankans.

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Nissanka laid the groundwork with a fluid fifty, but like Hasaranga, he didn’t get much backing until the two of them joined forces. Nissanka sliced on to Farooqi, who was arguably Afghanistan’s best bowler, just when it seemed like the pair might drive the hosts ahead.

Naib backed him up well, and for Afghanistan to have just one spin wicket in ten is unheard of. Tells you how successfully they exploited the circumstances on offer.

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So, things are looking well for Afghanistan in their first-ever bilateral series played on Sri Lankan territory. They took the lead early and never relinquished it, winning the game and picking up three crucial points in the Super League process. They came out swinging while batting, with plenty of purpose and making excellent use of a solid batting surface, but they ultimately fell short. The bowlers took control from there, and Sri Lanka will be disappointed they weren’t able to complete the chase. Sunday brings another showdown between the two squads, so there isn’t much time to rest.

Sri Lanka Playing XI: Pathum Nissanka, Kusal Mendis (wk), Dinesh Chandimal, Dhananjaya de Silva, Charith Asalanka, Dasun Shanaka (c), Wanindu Hasaranga, Dhananjaya Lakshan, Maheesh Theekshana, Lahiru Kumara, Kasun Rajitha

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Afghanistan Playing XI: Rahmanullah Gurbaz (wk), Ibrahim Zadran, Hashmatullah Shahidi (c), Najibullah Zadran, Gulbadin Naib, Mohammad Nabi, Rahmat Shah, Rashid Khan, Fazalhaq Farooqi, Mujeeb Ur Rahman, Yamin Ahmadzai

Twitter Reacts:

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