Pace bowler Mohammed Siraj delivered a stellar performance, claiming figures of 6-21, as he led India to a resounding 10-wicket victory over Sri Lanka, securing their eighth Asia Cup title on Sunday.
Siraj’s exceptional display featured a remarkable feat – taking four wickets in a single over, dismantling the Sri Lankan lineup for a mere 50 runs. India’s openers, Ishan Kishan and Shubman Gill, swiftly chased down the target in just 6.1 overs, setting the stage for an impressive win ahead of next month’s ODI World Cup on home soil.
The 50-over contest left the nearly packed stadium disappointed as they witnessed only 116 minutes of play. Despite opting to bat first following a rain delay, the hosts faced an early setback when pace spearhead Jasprit Bumrah dismissed Kusal Perera for a duck in the very first over.
Nonetheless, it was Siraj who emerged as the star of the show, exhibiting skilful swing and seam bowling under overcast conditions, surpassing his previous best ODI figures of 4-32.
Siraj’s brilliance continued as he dismissed Pathum Nissanka for just two runs and then claimed the wickets of Sadeera Samarawickrama (0) and Charith Asalanka (0) on successive balls, narrowly missing a hat-trick.
Dhananjaya de Silva managed a boundary but soon fell victim to Siraj’s precision, caught behind to the delight of Indian fans. Siraj secured his fifth wicket by removing Sri Lankan captain Dasun Shanaka, equalling the ODI record for the fastest five-wicket haul in just his first 16 balls.
Kusal Mendis contributed three boundaries before becoming Siraj’s sixth victim. Fortunately for Sri Lanka, they avoided the ignominy of posting the lowest-ever ODI total of 35, a record held by Zimbabwe.