Home Cricket News [WATCH]: Miscommunication And Miscalculation Result In Afghanistan’s Heartbreaking Loss To Sri Lanka In The Asia Cup

[WATCH]: Miscommunication And Miscalculation Result In Afghanistan’s Heartbreaking Loss To Sri Lanka In The Asia Cup

[WATCH]: Miscommunication And Miscalculation Result In Afghanistan’s Heartbreaking Loss To Sri Lanka In The Asia Cup

While the final score indicates Sri Lanka’s 12th consecutive win by a margin of two runs, the outcome of the game could easily have swung in either team’s favour. Afghanistan has transformed from an underdog into one of the most thrilling teams in limited-overs cricket.

In recent years, they consistently delivered exciting matches against strong opponents in multi-nation tournaments. Recall the 2018 Asia Cup, where they tied against India in MS Dhoni’s last game as captain.

Fast forward to Tuesday at Lahore’s Gaddafi Stadium during the 2023 edition of the tournament, Afghanistan showcased a timeless contest against defending champions Sri Lanka. While the final score shows Sri Lanka’s two-run victory, the game could have swung either way, leaving Afghanistan devastated due to apparent miscalculations and communication breakdowns.

Afghanistan suffered a two-run defeat against Sri Lanka in the Asia Cup

Following a heavy defeat to Bangladesh in their opening match, Afghanistan required a comprehensive win within 40 overs to improve their Net Run Rate (NRR) and advance to the Super Four stage. The scenario was such that achieving this would have placed Afghanistan above the defending champions in the NRR rankings, alongside Bangladesh.

With Kusal Mendis’ impressive 92 runs leading Sri Lanka to a total of 291 for eight, Hashmatullah Shahidi’s team boiled down to the necessity of chasing down the target within 37.1 overs to secure a spot in the Super Four.

Despite the top-order struggling, the middle order, fueled by Mohammad Nabi’s outstanding 32-ball 65, displayed resilience. The captain contributed 59 runs off 66 balls, and Rahmat Shah added a valuable 40-ball 45. Afghanistan remained competitive thanks to Nabi’s performance, needing 90 runs from 64 balls at one point. Subsequent cameos from Karim Janat and Najibullah Zadran set the stage for Rashid Khan, who smashed three boundaries in four balls during the 37th over.

Afghanistan required just three runs to win off the final delivery, and the responsibility fell on Mujeeb Ur Rahman. Unfortunately, he hit the ball straight to the long-on fielder, leaving Rashid disheartened and on his knees. It marked the end of Afghanistan’s hopes, evident in the disappointed expressions worn by the players in the dressing room, as captured by the camera.

It seems like there was a clear breakdown in communication, perhaps originating from the dressing room or a miscalculation by the analyst. Nonetheless, Afghanistan had a chance to advance to the Super Four if they could manage to hit a six within the next three deliveries.

However, the lack of awareness regarding this opportunity became evident when the last batsman, Fazalhaq Farooqi, played defensively on the following three balls. He even faced a low full toss but opted for a defensive approach before eventually getting dismissed lbw.

You can watch the video here:

Rashid found himself in a state of despair, and it wasn’t due to any miscalculation on his part but rather the sudden and unexpected twist of fate that prevented their victory in Lahore. Surprisingly, the skipper was not questioned about this during the post-match interaction.

“Very disappointed about it,” Shahidi said. “We fought well, we gave our 100%. Proud of the team for they way we played, the way we batted. I think in the last couple of years we played good cricket in the ODI format also. We are still learning a lot. We had a lot of positives in this tournament.”

Get the latest cricket news here, like us on Facebook, and follow us on Twitter and Instagram for more such updates.

Latest Posts