Dasun Shanaka. PC- Getty
Dasun Shanaka. PC- Getty

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) hosted the Asia Cup in 2022, and there was a strong tendency in favour of teams chasing, making the final toss an important one to win. When Babar Azam made the right decision and chose to field against Sri Lanka, the odds were already stacked in Pakistan’s favour.

When Sri Lanka was reduced to 58/5 in the ninth over, things took a turn for the worst. The Sri Lankan batting lineup was then led by Bhanuka Rajapaksa, who turned around their position with an unbeaten 45-ball 71 to help them reach 170.

Following that, Sri Lanka outplayed Pakistan in the field, with Wanindu Hasaranga and Pramod Madushan claiming a combined seven wickets amid a sluggish batting display. As a result, Sri Lanka defeated Pakistan by 23 runs after bowling them out for 147. 

Bhanuka Rajapaksa
Bhanuka Rajapaksa. (Photo: Twitter)

Sri Lanka Takes Inspiration From CSK

Prior to the tournament’s championship game, the team batting first had triumphed just three times in 11 games. 

In two of those, India and Pakistan defeated Hong Kong, while in the third, Virat Kohli’s century helped India defeat an exhausted Afghanistan team that had just played two days in a row. 

CSK
Chennai Super Kings. (CSK) Image: BCCI

Dasun Shanaka, the captain of Sri Lanka, recognised before the toss that his team faced challenges since they were given the opportunity to bat, but he still believed they could prevail. 

After the match, he said that the team had in mind the final of IPL 2021 when Chennai Super Kings batted first and won. 

“In IPL 2021, Chennai won the match batting first and that is what was in my mind, we talked about it,” Shanaka said in the post-match press conference.  

Sri Lanka National Cricket Team (Image Credits: Twitter)
Sri Lanka National Cricket Team (Image Credits: Twitter)

Even in that year’s IPL, India’s flagship T20 event, teams batting second did win more games. IPL 2021 was also played in the UAE. 

SL vs PAK: Dasun Shanaka Reveals How CSK Inspired Sri Lanka's Asia Cup Final Win vs Pakistan SL vs PAK: Dasun Shanaka Reveals How CSK Inspired Sri Lanka's Asia Cup Final Win vs Pakistan SL vs PAK: Dasun Shanaka Reveals How CSK Inspired Sri Lanka's Asia Cup Final Win vs Pakistan SL vs PAK: Dasun Shanaka Reveals How CSK Inspired Sri Lanka's Asia Cup Final Win vs Pakistan

However, CSK won the last match by batting first and defeating Kolkata Knight Riders.

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