Pathum Nissanka’s maiden double century earns admiration from Sanath Jayasuriya

In a brilliant display of cricketing prowess, Sri Lanka’s Pathum Nissanka etched his name in history with a maiden ODI double century, guiding his team to a thrilling 42-run victory over Afghanistan in the first match of their three-match ODI series.

Legendary Sri Lankan batter Sanath Jayasuriya, no stranger to spectacular innings himself, couldn’t help but shower praise on Nissanka’s performance. Taking to X (formerly Twitter), Jayasuriya labeled the young talent’s knock as a “masterclass in batting.”

Nissanka’s unbeaten 210-run innings, adorned with 20 fours and eight sixes, secured a vital lead for Sri Lanka and made him the first Sri Lankan to achieve a double century in ODIs. It was a remarkable feat, achieved in just 136 balls, making him the tenth player ever to accomplish this milestone in the 50-over format.

The record-breaking innings saw Nissanka surpass Jayasuriya’s previous highest score for Sri Lanka in ODIs, reaching beyond 189 runs. In the annals of ODI history, he now shares the honor of being the joint fifth-highest individual scorer.

Sri Lanka secured the victory amidst the brilliance of Nabi and Omarzai

The game started with Sri Lanka batting first, posting an imposing 381 for three on the scoreboard. Nissanka’s partnership with Avishka Fernando, contributing 182 runs in 26.2 overs, set the stage for the fireworks. After Fernando’s departure at 88, Nissanka unleashed his aggressive side, finishing unbeaten at 210 runs off 139 balls.

Facing the daunting target, Afghanistan stumbled early at 55 for five, courtesy of Sri Lanka’s fast bowling duo Madushan and Chameera. However, an inspiring 242-run sixth-wicket partnership between Mohammad Nabi and Azmatullah Omarzai injected life into the Afghan innings. Despite their remarkable centuries, a sublime final spell by Madushan ensured Nabi’s dismissal at 136, leaving Omarzai unbeaten at 149.

While Afghanistan fought bravely, they fell 42 runs short of the target, setting the stage for a riveting second match on Sunday, February 11, at the same venue.