It was a great performance by Afghanistan as they won their opening clash against Sri Lanka quite comprehensively by 91 runs to thrash Sri Lanka out of the tournament. The Afghan bowlers were quite spectacular and restricted the Lankan batsmen quite brilliantly. As I mentioned in my pre-match predictions, Afghanistan will be a tough nut to crack and it eventually turned out that way.

After batting first, the Afghans posted a competitive total of 249 on the board. It was a great effort by Afghanistan in the end to post a total close to 250. The opening duo of Mohammad Shehzad and Ihsanullah Janat began quite brilliantly. The duo shared a 56 runs stand before the dismissal of Shehzad. Rahmat Shah looked in superb touch and scored a brilliant 72 of 90 balls.

Afghanistan bowled brilliantly

Afghanistan cricketer Mohammad Nabi (L) celebrates with teammates after he dismissed Sri Lanka’s cricket team captain Angelo Mathews during the one day international (ODI) Asia Cup cricket match between Sri Lanka and Afghanistan at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi on September 17, 2018. (Photo by ISHARA S. KODIKARA / AFP) (Photo credit should read ISHARA S. KODIKARA/AFP/Getty Images)

The Lankan bowlers bowled well in the middle overs. Eventually, the Afghans posted a competitive total of 249. It was a good total especially given the fact that Sri Lanka found it quite difficult against Bangladesh. Thisara Perera was the pick of the Sri Lanka bowlers bagging 5 wickets. The Lankans was always going to find it difficult to chase the target down.

Sri Lanka got off to the worst possible start as they lost the wicket of Kusal Mendis in the very first over From there on Upul Tharanga batted sensibly. However, the Afghanistan bowlers bowled brilliantly in the middle overs and kept taking wickets on regular intervals.  They were eventually bowled out in the 43rd oer handing Afghanistan a superb victory by a convincing margin of 91 runs.

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