Mirpur (Bangladesh), March 4 (IANS) Pakistan came up with a strong batting performance to defeat Sri Lanka by six wickets in their inconsequential final round robin encounter of the Asia Cup Twenty20 cricket tournament at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium here on Friday.
Batting first, Sri Lanka posted 150/4 in 20 overs, thanks to Tillakaratne Dilshan’s unbeaten 75.
In reply, Umar Akmal slammed a quickfire 48 as Pakistan chased down the total in 19.2 overs while losing four wickets.
Chasing a challenging target of 151, Pakistan struggled at the start losing Mohammad Hafeez (14) in the fourth over of the innings.
But his opening partner Sharjeel Khan (31) and incoming batsman Sarfraz Ahmed (38) held on to score at a good pace to help team cross the 50-run mark.
Next up, Dilshan picked the wicket of Sharjeel which was followed by Sarfraz’ wicket claimed by Milinda Siriwardana to reduce Pakistan to 94/3 in 13th over.
Incoming batsmen Akmal and Shoaib Malik (13) brought up a good partnership to ensure team went close to victory line with ease.
Earlier on put into bat, Sri Lanka got off to a flying start with openers Dilshan and Chandimal using their experience to counter the Pakistani bowlers and help team cross the 100-run mark without losing a wicket inside 14th over.
But the first ball of the 15th over saw pacer Wahab Riaz bringing on the first breakthrough to dismiss set batsman Chandimal.
The first wicket brought back fortunes back for Pakistan as some tight and good bowling saw Shehan Jayasuriya (4), Chamara Kapugedera (2) and Dasun Shanaka (0) going back to the pavilion in space of two overs.
But Dilshan used his experience to hold on and pile on a couple of boundaries in the death overs to help the team reach 150-run mark. The right-handed batsman struck ten fours and one six.
Mohammad Irfan (2-18) was the pick of the bowlers for Pakistan.
Brief scores: Sri Lanka 150/4 in 20 overs (Tillakaratne Dilshan 75 not out, Dinesh Chandimal 58; Mohammad Irfan 2-18) vs Pakistan 151/4 in 19.2 overs (Umar Akmal 48; Nuwan Kulasekara 1-20)