Sri Lanka beat Bangladesh by 5 wickets in their first game of Group A.
In response to the 171 of Bangladesh, Sri Lanka lost Kusal Perera in the very first over as Nasum Ahmed, playing his first game in an ICC event, managed to hit the timber.
From then on, it was all Sri Lanka throughout the powerplay as the Lions took themselves to 54/1 at the end of the sixth over.
As things were gradually starting to look ominous for Bangladesh, the leading wicket-taker in the history of T20Is Shakib Al Hasan cleaned up Pathum Nissanka (24) and Avishka Fernando (0) in the same over to get the Tigers back in the game.
Halfway through, the Lions were at 80/4 as Saifuddin got the better of Wanindu Hasaranga (6) in the tenth over.
In the thirteenth over, Charith Asalanka reached his maiden half-century in T20Is off just 32 balls.
Mahmudullah’s tactics of continuing with three overs of part-time spin backfired heavily which basically threw Bangladesh out of the game.
Those three overs between the skipper himself and Afif cost Bangladesh a crucial 36 runs. That period of carnage also included a missed opportunity from Liton Das, which did not help Bangladesh’s cause either.
The Fizz was close to getting his side back in the game, but Litton once again failed to hold on to a relatively easy chance.
In the last five overs, Sri Lanka required only 46 runs to win the match. Saifuddin then completely messed it up conceding 22 runs in an over.
The birthday boy Bhanuka Rajapaksa also got to his half-century in just 28 deliveries before getting dismissed for 53 off 31.
Charith Asalanka, for his amazing innings of unbeaten 80 off 49 deliveries, has been adjudged the Player of the Match.
Earlier today, after losing the toss and being put in to bat, Bangladesh had a decent start scoring 41/1 in the powerplay. Despite Shakib’s early departure, Bangladesh reached 72/2 at the end of the tenth over.
Since then, Bangladesh added another 99 runs in the last ten overs, thanks to Naim’s 62 and Mushfiq’s unbeaten 57.
However, the Tigers might feel in hindsight that they should have capitalised in the slog overs even more given the number of wickets they had in hand at the beginning of the last four overs, where they managed to accumulate a total of 42 runs.