History does repeat itself. Or at least it did at Wankhede on Thursday. The Indian bowling juggernaut crushed the Sri Lankan once again, making it two in two after the Asia Cup final. The Indian batting stalwarts flexed their muscle to post a huge target on the board, which I was never challenged by the Sri Lankans, not even once. Mohammed Shami might be in one of the hottest streaks of forms in the history of the game. Is this the year when the World Cup is finally coming back to the home of the blues after a 12-year-long wait?
India did not make any change to their squad that defeated England by a 100-run margin. as Hardik Pandya was still missing with a twisted ankle. Sri Lanka made one change to their team that was beaten comprehensively by Afghanistan in the last game.
- Rohit Sharma (Cap.) 2. Shubman Gill 3. Virat Kohli 4. Shreyas Iyer 5. KL Rahul (WK) 6. Suryakumar Yadav 7. Ravindra Jadeja 8. Mohammed Shami 9. Jasprit Bumrah 10. Kuldeep Yadav 11. Mohammed Siraj
- Pathum Nissanka 2. Dimuth Karunaratne 3. Kusal Mendis (Cap.) (WK) 4. Sadeera Samarawickrama 5. Charith Asalanka 6. Angelo Matthews 7. Dushan Hemantha 8. Maheesh Theekshana 9. Kasun Rajitha 10. Dushmantha Chameera 11. Dilshan Madushanka
This game is the first time since Sri Lanka’s Asia Cup Final humiliation back in September. The two have met 8 times at the World Cup. Both teams had four wins, and the game in the 1992 World Cup yielded no result.
|Venue||The 33rd game of the 2023 World Cup was played in the historic Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai.|
|Date||The game started at 1:30 pm IST on November 2|
Captaincy & Tactics
Sri Lanka started the game well by getting Rohit Sharma early in the game. Gill and Kohli were cautious at first, but they started the assault once they played themselves in. Both right-handers were coming down the wicket to neutralize the swing of the ball. Sri Lankan bowlers decided to go short to unsettle them.
Shubman Gill was pleasing to the eyes and got on top of the bounce to whack the ball away on the square regions on both sides. The introduction of Hemantha came at the wrong time for the Sri Lankans, who found it hard to break the partnership. Dilshan Madushanka bowled with a lot of pace, just like he did against the Netherlands.
Shreyas Iyer got back his mojo after so many games. He played the ball on the back foot against the spinners, a ploy that ended in a devastating consequence for the bowlers. The spinner tried to toss the ball up to lure Iyer in. But Iyer was up to the task, and he hit 6 sixes to boost the run rate. Ravindra Jadeja was also instrumental in the late flurry of boundaries with a strike rate of 145.83. Stand-in Sri Lankan spinner Kusal Mendis did not have any answer in the face of an Indian batting onslaught.
Rohit Sharma did not have to think a lot in the second innings. His pace bowling trio was in supreme form. The Indian bowlers were hitting the golden length effortlessly and asked too much for the struggling Sri Lankan batting lineup. Once Mohammed Shami came in, it was game over in double quick time. The 33-year-old pacer from Uttar Pradesh was swinging the ball away from the right-hander and finished the game with a fifer. It was a day for utter domination for a team that looked sharp and hungry.
Virat Kohli had a chance to equal Sachin Tendulkar’s record of 49 One Day International (ODI) centuries at a stadium where a statue of Tendulkar had been unveiled before the game. The crowd at Wankhede Stadium eagerly awaited Kohli’s century, but Madushanka had other plans and dismissed him 12 runs short of the record. Kohli could have been out earlier if Dushmantha Chameera held on to a catch in the sixth over.
Shubman Gill also got lucky during the early part of the game when Charith Asalanka dropped a catch when Gill was on 8 runs. Gill and Kohli then punished Sri Lanka with a partnership of 189 runs on a hot afternoon.
Kohli showed his skills with cover drives, while Gill took the initiative by stepping out of his crease to score runs. Gill also took advantage of Sri Lanka’s fast bowlers by pulling their short deliveries. Dushan Hemantha, a leg-spinning all-rounder filling in for the injured Wanindu Hasaranga, couldn’t stop the flow of runs either.
As Kohli and Gill approached their centuries, Indian fans began to hope for double centuries from both players. However, Madushanka returned to the attack and prevented both players from reaching three figures. He then surprised Suryakumar Yadav with a quick bouncer, causing him to lose his wicket.
Shreyas Iyer joined the run-scoring frenzy by hitting boundaries but fell just short of a century. He smashed a huge six, the tournament’s longest so far, when Kasun Rajitha provided an opportunity outside the off stump. Iyer completed his fifty off 36 balls and continued to attack even against Sri Lanka’s best bowlers, Madushanka and Chameera. Iyer scored 18 runs off nine balls from Madushanka before getting caught out.
Iyer’s aggressive batting helped India score 93 runs in the last ten overs. Ravindra Jadeja also contributed with the bat, but the Indian bowlers stole the show in the match.
India’s fast-bowling trio performed exceptionally well, taking quick wickets against Sri Lanka. The scores of Sri Lanka’s top five batsmen were very low, just like the numbers in binary code: 0, 0, 1, 0, 1. Shami, one of the Indian bowlers, also dismissed the seventh and eighth batsmen for zero runs when the score was 29, putting Sri Lanka in a dangerous situation of getting a very low score in the game.
In the end, Sri Lanka’s innings came to an end in 19.4 overs, resulting in India achieving the fourth-largest victory in this format of the game. Shami’s performance was outstanding as he took five wickets while giving away only 18 runs. This made him the highest wicket-taker for India in World Cups. It was the third time in 2023 that India had dismissed Sri Lanka for less than 100 runs in One Day International matches, and it was their second victory by more than 300 runs against Sri Lanka this year.
The first ball bowled by Bumrah indicated the trouble that was about to happen. He positioned himself wide of the crease, delivered a full ball that swung in, and then swung away sharply, hitting the back pad hard. Siraj also took a wicket with his first ball, trapping Dimuth Karunaratne in front of the wicket. Just four balls later, Siraj had Sadeera Samarawickrama caught by a fielder at third slip.
However, the most remarkable dismissal was of captain Kusal Mendis. Coaches often advise bowlers to deliver the ball at a length that is difficult for the batsman to play – not too short to cut or pull, but not too full for driving. Siraj not only hit that perfect length to trick Mendis into missing the ball, but he also broke the bails. With the score at 3 for 4 and only one run scored off the bat, Sri Lanka’s batting lineup was in shambles.
Angelo Mathews and the lower-order batsmen made an effort to recover, but they could only manage to push Sri Lanka’s total to 55 runs. That was just five runs more than what they had scored in the Asia Cup final at the Premadasa in September earlier this year.
The outstanding performance of India’s fast bowlers overshadowed the achievements of their batsmen and Dilshan Madushanka, who took his first five-wicket haul in international cricket.
Madushanka surprised everyone at Wankhede Stadium with his second ball – a clever delivery similar to Mustafizur Rahman’s cutter, which knocked down Rohit Sharma’s off stump. Four out of Madushanka’s five wickets came from his skillful technique of changing the grip on the ball. However, the rest of Sri Lanka’s bowlers struggled to prevent the opponents from scoring runs, which has been a recurring problem for them in this tournament.
The Sri Lankan fielding has been below par in this tournament. This match also fell into the same pattern. Asalanka dropped Kohli on 10 when the batter was just finding his feet. Chameera dropped Kohli off his own bowling in the next over. These shelled catches took the game away from the Sri Lankans. Kohli was eventually dismissed by a fantastic low grab by Nissanka at short cover, with the Indian legend missing out on another century just like the New Zealand game. Sri Lankans got their breakthroughs eventually, but the damage has already been done.
India fielded brilliantly to back up the historic bowling display. However, they did not have to do much in terms of fielding or catching. All the Sri Lankan batsmen lost their wickets to easy catches. The game was in the bag even before the 20th over. It was a record-breaking win by 302 runs as India became the first team to book their place in the semi-finals.
Shubman Gill finally hit form in this World Cup tournament with a blistering run-a-ball 92. Virat Kohli was at his magnificent best and narrowly missed out on a century after scoring 88 runs. Shreyas Iyer came and hit top gear from the start; he got a stroke-filled 82 off 56 deliveries. Ravindra Jadeja played a cameo of 35 to ensure India maintained their steep run rate. Dilshan Madushanka has been a revelation for Sri Lanka at this tournament. He finished with the figures of 5 for 80. Dushmantha Chameera was the only other bowler among the wickets; he got 1 for 70.
Mohammed Siraj started off the bowling just like he did in the last game against Sri Lanka, tearing apart the batting lineup. He finished the day with 3 for 16. The star of the day was Mohammed Shami, though, who got another five-wicket haul, which made him the highest wicket-taker (40) for India at the World Cups. Jasprit Bumrah and Ravindra Jadeja got a wicket apiece. Kasun Rajitha was the top scorer among the Sri Lankan capitulation with 14 runs. Theekshana and Mathews were the only other batsmen to have managed double digits: both scored 12.
Sri Lanka started the day on a high note after Dilshan Madushanka cleaned up Rohit Sharma’s stumps on the second ball of the game. Virat Kohli joined Shubman Gill on the crease. They were going smoothly until both gave chances within 3 balls. On the 5th ball of the 4th over, Madushanka pitched one of good length, just outside the off-stump line. Shubman Gill played a square cut, and the ball flew towards the backward point region. Charith Asalanka dived towards his right to grab the ball. But he couldn’t pouch it despite getting both hands on the ball.
Three balls later, Sri Lanka missed another golden opportunity to get ahead in the game. Virat Kohli tried to steer the ball back past the bowler Dushmantha Chameera. The bowler was in his follow-through; he got his left hand out. However, he could not gather it to give Virat an early reprieve. Both Gill and Kohli went on to post 80+ scores, and India heaped a run mountain on the Lankan shoulders.
India recorded their biggest win in World Cup history with a huge margin of 302 runs.
Player of the Match
Mohammed Shami recorded another five-wicket haul at the World Cup stage and bagged the Best Player of the Match award.
|India Total: 357/8 (50 overs)||Sri Lanka Total: 55/10 (19.4 overs)|
|Shubman Gill 92 (92)||Kasun Rajitha 14 (27)|
|Virat Kohli 88 (94)||Maheesh Theekshana 12* (23)|
|Dilshan Madushanka 5/80||Mohammed Shami 5/18|
|Dushmantha Chameera 1/71||Mohammed Siraj 3/16|
Team India made seven out of seven with a fantastic win against the Lankan Lions. The game was just another show of Indian domination – from start to finish. Sri Lankans hopes looked bleak after the first innings; it evaporated on the first ball of the second. Team India is the first team to get through to the last four with two games in hand. The Indians will face the Proteas in a mouth-watering clash of the Titans on Sunday. Conversely, Sri Lanka would face fellow strugglers Bangladesh in the next game to end the World Cup on a positive note.