Sri Lanka lost a closely fought quarter final to Afghanistan by 4 runs in the Under-19 World Cup at Coolidge, Antigua yesterday. On a spinning wicket Sri Lanka might well rue putting in Afghanistan to bat who made 134 in 47.1 overs to which the Lankans were all out for 130 in 46 overs.
Sri Lanka recovered from 7 for 43 in 17.1 overs to reach 112 for 8 when skipper Dunith Wellalage fell for 34 (3×4) in the fifth ball of the 45th over off 61 balls following a 69- run eighth wicket partnership with Raveen de Silva who made a painstaking 21 (2×4) off 84 balls. Their effort could not lift the side despite a tooth and nail tussle that fetched a further 18 runs with the next two wickets falling in a last gasp effort as the Afghans won that final bout and the match to go through to the semi finals.
When Afghanistan batted, Sri Lanka’s Winuja Ranpul struck claiming 5 wickets for 10 runs.
However, Afghanistan rallied through resolute knocks by Abdul Rehadi who made 37 off 97 balls (3×4, 1×6) and Noor Ahamad 30 off 33 (6×4) and Allah Noor 25 off 58. Wellalage was the other Lankan bowler among the wickets with a 3-wicket take for 36.