Women’s Asia Cup : Sri Lanka to face India in final after edging Pakistan by one run in last-ball thriller

Sylhet (Bangladesh) : Sri Lanka on Thursday edged Pakistan by one run in a last-ball thriller of the second semifinal of Women’s Asia Cup at the Sylhet International Cricket Stadium (SICS) on Thursday to set up a meeting with India in the final of the multi-nation event on Saturday.

Needing nine runs to win from the last over, which became three runs off the final ball, Nida Dar was run-out while attempting to take a second run, as Pakistan managed to make 121/6 in their 20 overs, falling just a run short of Sri Lanka’s 122/6 in 20 overs.

Electing to bat first, though captain Chamari Athapaththu fell for ten early in the innings, other batters stepped up when it mattered the most. There was a 50-run partnership between Harshitha Madavi (35 off 41 balls, one four) and Nilakshi de Silva (14 off 27 balls) for the third wicket.

Apart from the duo, opener Anushka Sanjeewani made 26 off 21 balls, which included one four and one six. For Pakistan, left-arm spinner Nashra Sandhu bagged figures of 3/17 while spinners Sadia Iqbal, Nida Dar and right-arm fast bowler Aiman Anwer took one wicket each.

Chasing 123, Pakistan’s openers Muneeba Ali and Sidra Amin shared a 31-run stand, before the former ran herself out on the first ball of the fourth over. Captain Bismah Maroof joined Sidra and the pair added a 16-run partnership for the second wicket, before the latter gave a catch to diving short third man while playing a reverse sweep off Inoka Ranaweera on the last ball of the seventh over.

Pakistan were in a spot of bother when they lost Omaima Sohail in the 11th over. But Bismah joined forces with Nida for a 42-run stand for the fourth wickets. Bismah was going strong and leading the chase for her team before being castled for 42 off 41 balls, laced with four fours.

Bismah’s dismissal gave a ray of hope to Sri Lanka to make a comeback in the match. They did make full use of that chance and restricted Pakistan to 121/6, with Nida making a run-a-ball 26, and hitting one four, but couldn’t her team to the final of Women’s Asia Cup.

For Sri Lanka, Inoka bagged 2/17, while Sugandika Kumari and Kavisha Dilhari had a scalp each as the side entered Women’s Asia Cup final after 14 years.

Brief Scores: Sri Lanka 122/6 in 20 overs (Harshitha Madavi 35, Anushka Sanjeewani 26; Nashra Sandhu 3/17) beat Pakistan 121/6 in 20 overs (Bismah Maroof 42, Nida Dar 26; Inoka Ranaweera 2/17) by one run





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