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Mohammed Siraj’s Sensational Bowling Propels India to 2023 Asia Cup Victory

In a historic Asia Cup final, Mohammed Siraj’s exceptional bowling, featuring a four-wicket over, dismantled Sri Lanka for 50 runs. India sealed victory with 263 balls remaining, claiming their eighth Asia Cup title.

In a historic display of fast bowling mastery, Mohammed Siraj led India to a resounding victory in the 2023 Asia Cup final against Sri Lanka. Siraj’s spellbinding performance, featuring an astonishing four wickets in a single over, decimated Sri Lanka’s batting order, restricting them to a paltry total of 50 runs. India cruised to victory in just 6.1 overs with openers Shubman Gill and Ishan Kishan putting on an unbroken 51-run partnership, securing their eighth Asia Cup title.

Siraj’s exceptional figures of 6-21 marked a career-best for the fast bowler and stood as only the second six-wicket haul in the history of the Asia Cup. His remarkable feat eclipsed the previous best bowling performance against Sri Lanka, surpassing Waqar Younis’s 6-26 recorded in 1990. This phenomenal performance set up India’s most comprehensive victory in terms of deliveries remaining, as they sealed the championship with a whopping 263 balls to spare.

Sri Lanka’s top-order batsmen were no match for the fiery pace and precision of Siraj. In a stunning collapse, the home team lost six wickets within the first six overs of the match, leaving them reeling at 12/6 – a joint-lowest score at the fall of the sixth wicket in all ODIs.

The decision by Sri Lankan captain Dasun Shanaka to bat first played into the hands of the Indian pacers, who capitalized on favorable swing and movement conditions. It was Jasprit Bumrah who struck first, dismissing Kusal Perera with an edge to the wicketkeeper in the opening over. In the fourth over, Siraj launched a devastating assault, claiming the wickets of Pathum Nissanka, Sadeera Samarawickrama, Charith Asalanka, and Dhananjaya de Silva, becoming the first Indian bowler to capture four wickets in a single over in ODIs.

Following a maiden over from Bumrah, Siraj continued his rampage by bowling out Dasun Shanaka for a duck. Kusal Mendis fought valiantly to stabilize the innings but ultimately became Siraj’s sixth victim in the bowler’s sixth over. A well-executed short delivery from Hardik Pandya resulted in the dismissal of Dunith Wellalage, leaving Sri Lanka in dire straits at 40/8.

Dushan Hemantha, a replacement for the injured Maheesh Theekshana, contributed vital runs to prevent the ignominy of the lowest ODI total. Nevertheless, Pandya managed to capture the wickets of Pramod Madushan and Matheesha Pathirana, concluding the innings in the 16th over. Sri Lanka’s final total of 50 runs established an unfortunate record, marking the lowest total in the history of ODI finals.

While the Sri Lankan pacers found some assistance from the pitch, their inconsistency allowed Shubman Gill and Ishan Kishan to dominate with a flurry of boundaries. Their expertly executed drives, cuts, and pulls propelled India towards the target with ease. Gill ended the innings with six fours, while Kishan contributed with three boundaries and the winning run.

With this spectacular victory, India clinched their eighth Asia Cup title, further solidifying their reputation as a cricketing powerhouse on the world stage.

Brief Scores:

  • Sri Lanka: 50 in 15.2 overs (Kusal Mendis 17, Dushan Hemantha 13*; Mohammed Siraj 6-21, Hardik Pandya 3-3)
  • India: 51/0 in 6.1 overs (Shubman Gill 27, Ishan Kishan 23)
  • India won by 10 wickets.

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