BAN vs SL: Sri Lanka hold nerves to secure a 3-run victory over Bangladesh

An all-round batting display from the Sri Lankan batters, followed by superb bowling from the duo of Matthews and Shanaka, secured Sri Lanka a nail-biting victory by just three runs in the first T20I against their rivals, Bangladesh.

Earlier in the game, sent in to bat first, Sri Lanka faced an early setback when Avishka Fernando fell in the very first over to a brilliant delivery from Shoriful Islam, while Kamindu Mendis departed after a fluent 19. However, Kusal Mendis and Sadeera Samarawickrama steadied the innings with a 97-run partnership for the third wicket, displaying elegant stroke-play as both notched up half-centuries.

The innings were further bolstered by skipper Asalanka’s solid unbeaten cameo of 44 runs, guiding the visitors to a competitive total of 206 in their allotted 20 overs.

In pursuit of 207, Bangladesh stumbled early as Litton Das departed for a duck, caught behind off Angelo Mathews. Despite Mahmudullah, Jaker Ali, and Mahedi Hasan forming crucial partnerships, the top-order collapse left them struggling at 68/4.

Mahmudullah’s well-crafted 54 and Ali’s aggressive 68 off 34 balls took Bangladesh close, but dew played a role as Sri Lankan bowlers lost control, with Pathirana conceding 10 wides and three no-balls. Ali’s onslaught left Bangladesh needing 12 runs off the final six balls. However, Shanaka held his nerve, taking two wickets and defending the target brilliantly, guiding Sri Lanka to a thrilling victory.