Kohli, Gill, Iyer and pacers help India advance to semifinals

At the Wankhede stadium on Thursday, November 2, India’s pace trio of Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Siraj, and Mohammed Shami produced a magnificent show with the new ball to destroy Sri Lanka. The way Sri Lanka batted brought back memories of their performance in the Asia Cup final in September of this year when they were bowled out for just fifty runs. This time, they were only able to roll over a couple more to lose by an embarrassing 302 runs. India’s seventh consecutive victory ensured they would advance to the semifinals.

Chasing a formidable 358, Sri Lanka was immediately put on the back foot. Pathum Nissanka, their best batsman, was caught by Bumrah leg-before-wicket in the opening ball for a golden duck, while Dimuth Karunaratne suffered a similar fate in Siraj’s second over. The next player out was Sadeera Samarawickrama, who beat Siraj to the slip cordon. Siraj, who had destroyed the Sri Lankans with a six-fer in the Asia Cup final, left them dumbfounded as 2/3 turned into 3/4.

There was no chance for Sri Lanka to make a comeback because three of the top four players registered ducks. After 20 balls, Charith Asalanka managed to get off to a start and eventually smashed Shami squarely to Ravindra Jadeja in an attempt to break loose. Then, to profit from Sri Lanka’s predicament, Shami replaced Siraj and Bumrah. Wickets kept falling, and when Sri Lanka was reeling at 29/8, there was a serious chance they would record the lowest total in ODI history. They were fortunate to have boundaries from Maheesh Theekshana and Kasun Rajitha, as they were able to avoid breaking the record. Shami, who at one point had stats of 4/1, added a fifth as well to win man of the match and establish himself as India’s all-time leading wicket-taker in World Cup history.


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