Source: ICC Asia Cup 2023

In the Asia Cup 2023 Final showdown between India and Sri Lanka, India secured their eighth Asia Cup title with an emphatic 10-wicket victory. The dynamic duo of Gill and Kishan completed the job in just 6.1 overs, capitalizing on Siraj’s astounding six-wicket haul that dismantled Sri Lanka’s innings, leaving them all out for a mere 50 runs.

The match witnessed a blistering start from India, as Mohammed Siraj unleashed his fury on the Sri Lankan batting order within the first six overs. Jasprit Bumrah set the tone with a wicket in the third ball, but it was Siraj who wreaked havoc in the fourth over, claiming four wickets to his name. In his second over, Siraj dismissed Sri Lanka’s captain, Dasun Shanaka, completing his five-wicket haul. Sri Lanka found themselves in dire straits at 12/6 in just 5.4 overs. Siraj’s remarkable figures of 6/21 were a record-breaking feat, marking the best performance by any bowler in an ODI against Sri Lanka.

Hardik Pandya joined the onslaught, securing three wickets and swiftly concluding the Sri Lankan innings with two consecutive dismissals in the 16th over. Sri Lanka’s final score of 50 was their second-lowest ever in ODIs.

India’s chase began with Ishan Kishan and Shubman Gill, who put on a spectacular display of their batting prowess. They amassed 32 runs in just three overs and continued to excel, successfully reaching the target in the seventh over. India clinched the final with a staggering 10 wickets and 263 balls to spare.

The post-match ceremony saw Rohit Sharma, India’s captain, receiving the trophy from ACC president and BCCI secretary Jay Shah. He continued the tradition of passing the trophy to the younger players in the squad, emphasizing the team’s unity and the importance of nurturing young talent.

Reflecting on the tournament, Rohit highlighted India’s consistent performance and their ability to adapt despite injuries to key players. He praised the seamers, including Siraj, Bumrah, and Kuldeep Yadav, for their outstanding efforts, even mentioning the absence of Mohammed Shami due to the team’s depth.

Rohit Sharma expressed his optimism for upcoming series and the World Cup, emphasizing the team’s resilience and the contributions of players like Hardik, Ishan, KL Rahul, Virat Kohli, and Shubman Gill throughout the tournament.

Sri Lanka’s captain, Dasun Shanaka, acknowledged the brilliance of Mohammed Siraj’s bowling display and admitted that the overcast conditions played a role in their challenging day. Despite the loss, he identified positive aspects in the performance of players like Sadeera, Kusal, and Asalanka, expressing confidence in their ability to score heavily in better batting conditions.

The ground staff received recognition for their exceptional work during the tournament, with a cheque of USD 50,000 presented to them. National curator Godfrey Dabrare accepted the award on their behalf.

Kuldeep Yadav was named the Player of the Series, attributing his success to the work he had put into improving his rhythm, aggression through the crease, and focusing on lengths in his bowling. He credited Rohit Sharma for encouraging him to work on his speed.

Mohammed Siraj, the standout bowler of the final, humorously mentioned that there was “no biryani” celebration but instead expressed his satisfaction with his bowling performance. He highlighted the crucial role of camaraderie among fast bowlers and praised his teammates for their support.

Siraj was rightfully awarded the Player of the Match and dedicated his cash prize to the ground staff, recognizing their indispensable role in making the tournament possible.

As the presentation ceremony unfolded, Ravi Shastri extended gratitude to the organizers, broadcasters, and sponsors, wrapping up the memorable event.

Former Pakistan fast bowler Shoaib Akhtar summed up Siraj’s performance as “destruction and annihilation,” acknowledging the sheer dominance displayed by the Indian bowler.

Sri Lanka’s coach, Chris Silverwood, admitted to the disappointment of the team’s subpar performance and acknowledged the exceptional bowling attack presented by India. He also praised the emergence of younger bowlers like Sadeera and Pathirana, indicating the need for further discussions and assessments.

Hardik Pandya highlighted the team’s collective goal of performing under pressure and emphasized the importance of exploiting swinging conditions with the new ball in ODI cricket.

Shardul Thakur marveled at the match’s rapid conclusion, commending Bumrah’s strong start and Siraj’s remarkable spell. He pointed out that the victory showcased the team’s strategic preparation for the upcoming World Cup.

KL Rahul expressed his personal satisfaction with his recent form, having scored runs and excelled with the gloves. He recognized the importance of playing spin in the middle overs in the upcoming World Cup.

The match saw several records being set, including it being the third shortest ODI in terms of deliveries bowled, with only 37 balls required in the Indian innings. It also marked the biggest win in an ODI final in terms of balls remaining and India’s largest win in ODIs, surpassing their 231-run victory against Kenya in 2001. The aggregate of 101 runs scored in the match was the lowest in India-Sri Lanka ODIs.

Ishan Kishan, one of India’s promising young talents, shared his delight at opening the innings and acknowledged the role of the bowlers in securing the victory.

In the end, India’s resounding victory in the Asia Cup 2023 Final served as a statement of their dominance in Asian cricket, clinching their eighth Asia Cup title and their first major trophy since the 2018 Asia Cup.

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