Dasun Shanaka promised a surprise on the eve of the Super 4 game against India. The Sri Lankan captain refused to go into the details, but said they have a plan to execute against India on Tuesday. There weren’t any surprises, but Sri Lanka won easily by six wickets with one ball to spare in the Super 4 clash of the DP World Asia Cup at the Dubai International Stadium on Tuesday.
What was remarkable was the robust chase of India’s 173. If there was a hint of surprise, it was Shanaka’s bowling in the middle overs. He took out Suryakumar Yadav, who strung together India’s best partnership of 97 with skipper Rohit Sharma.
When Hardik Pandya started to look dangerous, Shanaka had him caught at midwicket. It wasn’t a great delivery, but that ensured India went into the slog overs without their finisher. India finished 10-15 runs short, Sharma was to say later.
But it didn’t matter with the way Sri Lanka launched the chase. Shanaka had warned about the aggressive approach in the pre-match press conference.
“We have a very good team, and we are batting well. We will keep attacking according to the situation, he said, in reference to the chases against Bangladesh and Afghanistan.
Even the fall of four wickets didn’t stifle Sri Lanka. In the company of Bhanuka Rajapaksa, Shanaka slammed an unbeaten 33 to steer Sri Lanka home.
“The confidence in the dressing room is great. The bowlers bowled well in patches. Dilshan [Madushanka], and [Maheesh] Theekshana, they bowled really well,” Shanaka told Star Sports.
Regarding the chase, he said: “We had good discussions after the first game, and we know what we can do. Pathum and Kusal set the tone brilliantly, and Rajapaksa and I set up the chase,” he told the official broadcaster.
Regarding his reluctance to bowl enough, Shanaka said: “It’s due to the team combination, so I haven’t been bowling my quota. I need to take the best decision the team needs.”