🏏Cricket World Cup 2023: Match #30: AFG vs SL on 30 Oct 🏏

Posted: 5 months ago

🏏Cricket World Cup 2023: Match #30: Afghanistan vs Sri Lanka at Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium, Pune on 30/10/2023 at 2:00PM IST🏏


Afghanistan and Sri Lanka hope to keep faint semi-final dreams alive

Both teams have beaten higher-ranked teams in their previous games and will hope to make the most of that momentum

While this World Cup has only belatedly started offering up some nail-biters, it's been rather more generous in terms of unexpected results. As a result, despite the sides currently occupying the top-four spots in the points table being the likeliest to make it through to the knockouts, there's a cluster of teams just below them ready to capitalise on any potential slip-ups.

For Afghanistan and Sri Lanka, three wins from their final four games in the league stage will leave them on ten points, which would give them a genuine shot at a semi-final berth. But of those four games, Afghanistan will face Australia and South Africa, while Sri Lanka still have to take on India and New Zealand.

This is what makes Monday's game in Pune all the more spicy; a win for either side leaves a margin for error in at least one of those "tougher" games, lose and those fledgling semi-final hopes become considerably dimmer.

Both sides also come into this fixture with some form. Well, as much form as sides that have lost three of their five games can be in.

While defeats to India and New Zealand might have been accounted for, an opening loss to Bangladesh hurt Afghanistan. But historic wins against England and Pakistan have rejuvenated Afghanistan's campaign.

As for Sri Lanka, three defeats on the bounce to South Africa, Pakistan and Australia had seemingly left their tournament hopes in tatters, but back-to-back wins over Netherlands and, more impressively, England has injected new vigour into a unit that was badly in need of a jolt.

There won't be many secrets between these two sides, with them having squared off in six ODIs over the past year. Sri Lanka have won four of them, though the last - an Asia Cup thriller in September - is one that would have left a sour taste in Afghanistan's mouths and will serve as added motivation if needed.


Tag Credit: Sutapasima

Posted: 5 months ago


Afghanistan vs Sri Lanka pitch report

The pitch report for the Afghanistan vs Sri Lanka game will be broadcasted a few minutes before the toss takes place. Generally, the wicket in Pune is a batting paradise. Several high-scoring matches have happened on this ground in the ODI format.

Afghanistan vs Sri Lanka weather forecast

The skies will be mostly sunny and partly cloudy when the match starts. Rain isn't expected to play a role in this game. It should be a complete 100-over match, with the temperature hovering around 26 degrees Celsius during the match hours.

Pitch and conditions

The Pune surface in recent times has shown a propensity for high scores, but there's also been some assistance for the spinners - something both sides could benefit from. That said, dew might come into play in the evening, so the toss will prove crucial as usual.

Posted: 5 months ago



Sri Lanka won by 2 runs 05-Sep-2023

Sri Lanka won by 9 wickets (with 204 balls remaining) 07-Jun-2023 

Sri Lanka won by 132 runs 04-Jun-2023

Afghanistan won by 6 wickets (with 19 balls remaining) 02-Jun-2023

Sri Lanka won by 4 wickets (with 2 balls remaining) 30-Nov-2022

Batters To Watch(recent stats)

Rahmanullah Gurbaz,  AFG

10 M • 403 Runs • 40.3 Avg • 89.75 SR

Ibrahim Zadran,  AFG

10 M • 335 Runs • 33.5 Avg • 77.01 SR

Kusal Mendis,  SL

10 M • 494 Runs • 49.4 Avg • 108.57 SR

Sadeera Samarawickrama,  SL

10 M • 456 Runs • 57 Avg • 103.4 SR

Bowlers To Watch(recent stats)

Rashid Khan,  AFG

10 M • 11 Wkts • 5.1 Econ • 52.63 SR

Mujeeb Ur Rahman,  AFG

10 M • 11 Wkts • 5.45 Econ • 50.72 SR

Dunith Wellalage,  SL

8 M • 11 Wkts • 5.36 Econ • 35.09 SR

Dilshan Madushanka,  SL

5 M • 11 Wkts • 6.28 Econ • 23.45 SR

Posted: 5 months ago

World Cup | Afghanistan v Sri Lanka: Preview

The clinical dismantling of Pakistan or England, which would you call bigger? The former happened in Chennai, on an easy-paced wicket as Afghanistan coasted to victory, going past Pakistan's total of 282 with an over to spare and 8 wickets in hand. Eight days before that, Afghanistan had pulled off the first upset of this World Cup, comfortably defending 284 against England in Delhi with spin playing a prominent role in their win. And then there was the comprehensive drubbing of England in Bengaluru, on a slow wicket, where Sri Lanka used the cutters and change of pace to good effect to bowl the Jos Buttler-led side out for 156 and took only 25.4 overs, with 8 wickets still remaining, to chase down the target and all but seal the defending champions' early exit.

Sri Lanka are currently fifth, and Afghanistan seventh, with both having four points after two wins apiece from five matches. The top four have eight or more points at this stage but the gridlock is among the teams below them, and the two Asian teams facing off in Pune on Monday will be eager to get ahead in this battle of one-upmanship and in the process keep themselves in the hunt for a semifinal spot should one or two teams in the top four falter at some stage in their remaining games.

For Afghanistan, after zero victories in the 2019 edition, this has been a huge improvement and they will be hoping their surge continues. And there is also the matter of unfinished business. Just about a couple of months back, they nearly pulled off an incredible chase against Sri Lanka but fell short of qualifying for the Super four stage of the Asia Cup. Not having a clear picture of the NRR permutations halted Afghanistan's progression in the competition and caused a heartbreak for them despite putting on quite a show with the bat. They have come a long way from that with inspiring performances in this World Cup but so have Sri Lanka who will be keen to extend their run of wins, having started the tournament with a hat-trick of losses.

Posted: 5 months ago


Team news:

Sri Lanka

Lahiru Kumara, the player of the match in Sri Lanka's victory against England, has been ruled out of the World Cup with a left thigh muscle injury which he sustained during a practice session in Pune. Sri Lanka have roped in Dushmantha Chameera as his replacement, and the pacer, already with the team as a travelling reserve, is likely to make the eleven.

Probable XI: Pathum Nissanka, Kusal Perera, Kusal Mendis (c & wk), Sadeera Samarawickrama, Charith Asalanka, Dhananjaya de Silva, Angelo Mathews, Maheesh Theekshana, Kasun Rajitha, Dushmantha Chameera, Dilshan Madushanka

Tactics & strategy

The combination of Kasun Rajitha and Dushmantha Chameera might work well for Sri Lanka up front, with the two pacers having had success against the Afghanistan top order. Although he did an excellent job with the ball against England, with figures of 1-21, Maheesh Theekshana has had a relatively quiet World Cup so far in terms of wickets, with only three in four games. The Afghanistan batters have also fared well against Theekshana, which could make it challenging for Sri Lanka in terms of their spin attack for this game.


The Hashmatullah Shahidi-led side enter this game after a break of six days but have spent a good amount of time practising in Pune. The captain, during the press conference, pointed towards the dew factor and skiddy wickets in Pune, which suggest Afghanistan could bring in an extra pacer in the form of Fazalhaq Farooqi. Noor Ahmad, who played a key role in their win against Pakistan, is likely to retain his place while Mujeeb Ur Rahman could make way.

Probable XI: Rahmanullah Gurbaz, Ibrahim Zadran, Rahmat Shah, Hashmatullah Shahidi (c), Azmatullah Omarzai, Ikram Alikhil (wk), Mohammad Nabi, Rashid Khan, Naveen-ul-Haq, Fazalhaq Farooqi, Noor Ahmad

Tactics & strategy

Mohammad Nabi has a favourable match-up against both Kusal Mendis and Angelo Mathews, having dismissed them two times each, and also has impressive strike rates and economy against them.

Posted: 5 months ago

In the spotlight - Rashid Khan and Pathum Nissanka

It's no secret that Rashid Khan's effectiveness in ODIs has not quite been at the same level as that in T20Is. So far, across five games, he's picked up six wickets, not exactly stats to set the world alight, but then again, this has been predominantly a batters' tournament so far.

However his record against Sri Lanka provides more cause for optimism. His 11 wickets across six innings at an average of 18.54 is only bettered by his record against Zimbabwe and Ireland among Full-Member nations; in those six innings, he's gone wicketless just once. Sri Lanka also have a soft underbelly, one that Afghanistan exploited once already in the warm-ups, and Rashid will be key to testing that brittle middle and lower order once more.

Will Rashid Khan make an impact against Sri Lanka?

Masking those middle-order jitters for Sri Lanka has been a rather more consistent top order, with Pathum Nissanka emerging as an unlikely leader. Indeed, if there was an award for most improved cricketer in the Sri Lankan ranks, you wouldn't have to look much beyond Nissanka.

Having debuted as a Test grafter in 2021, he was fast-tracked into the white-ball setup during a period when SLC was in the midst of a youth-driven overhaul and were taking a more long-term approach to squad building. This meant the selectors stuck with him through his lean start to ODIs - he scored 86 runs across his first nine innings - but he has paid that faith back in spades. It was at the end of that barren run that he was promoted to regular opener, and his 36 innings since have brought 13 fifties and three centuries. His average in ODIs now stands at 39.97, and in this World Cup he's kicked that up a notch, racking up four consecutive fifties at 60.75. More importantly, he has begun to show signs of developing a more aggressive approach - his strike rate in the tournament is 91.35, up from 83.64 prior to the start.

Posted: 5 months ago

India Cricket WCup

Stats and trivia

Nissanka's 296 runs is the most by a Sri Lanka batter against Afghanistan. It is also the most he's scored against a single nation.

Hashmatullah Shahidi is 57 runs away from reaching 2000 ODI runs

Sadeera Samarawickrama is 90 short of 1000 ODI runs

Posted: 5 months ago



"I think this break is good for us because we had back-to-back games before that and when you play too many games in short time, so the players get like tired. So that was good - after a good win when you are having rest and think about other games also that give you time and also give rest for the bodies and I can say that was good for us."

Hashmatullah Shahidi feels the six-day rest since their last game will hold them in good stead

Posted: 5 months ago

Sri Lanka

When: Monday, October 30 at 2:00 PM Local Time

Where: Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium, Pune

What to expect: In the only game played here earlier in this World Cup, India applied the choke on Bangladesh after they got off to a good start, keeping them to 256 and chasing it down in 41.3 overs. The World Cup is the first time in more than two years that the MCA stadium is hosting international 50-over cricket. Big totals were a regular feature in 2021 when India and England played three ODIs here, with the 300 mark being crossed five times in six innings. Although it wasn't the case in the India-Bangladesh game, batting-friendly pitches are the norm here and the same can be expected for the 30th match of World Cup 2023. A clear weather is forecast for the match duration, with temperatures in the early 30s for the first half of the game.

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