Twitter Reactions: Ibrahim Zadran and Fazalhaq Farooqi power Afghanistan to victory against Sri Lanka in ODI series opener

Ibrahim Zadran smashed his second ODI hundred to help Afghanistan score a big total (294/8) while batting first.

Ibrahim Zadran and Fazalhaq Farooqi
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Ibrahim Zadran and Fazalhaq Farooqi. (Photo Source: Twitter)

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Afghanistan recorded a big 60-run win over Sri Lanka in the first game of the ongoing ODI series at the Pallekele International Cricket Stadium on Friday (November 25). Ibrahim Zadran's second ODI century helped Afghanistan to score a big total (294/8) while batting first and then Fazalhaq Farooqi's four-wicket match-winning spell ensured a dominating win for the visitors.  

Afghanistan skipper Hashmatullah Shahidi won the toss and elected to bat first and that proved to be the right decision for the travelling side. Ibrahim and Rahmanullah Gurbaz started the innings for Afghanistan and added a big 84-run partnership for the first wicket. The centurion played cautious cricket in the beginning and let Gurbaz take the charge.

Gurbaz smashed 53 runs off just 55 balls before getting out to Wanindu Hasaranga in the 15th over. But Ibrahim and Rahmat Shah added another big partnership to keep Afghanistan on track for a big total. Rahmat scored crucial 52 runs and middle-order batter Najibullah Zadran contributed with 42 runs off just 25 balls. 

Meanwhile, Ibrahim smashed his second ODI century to help Afghanistan score a big and challenging total of 294/8.  For Sri Lanka, Hasaranga proved to be the most successful bowler with two wickets while others struggled for wickets and to keep the run rate in check.

Farooqi and Gulbadin Naib prove too strong for Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka, while chasing the 295-run target, lost their in-form opener Kusal Mendis with just 16 runs on the board in the fourth over. The reigning Asian champions struggled for meaningful partnerships in the beginning and kept losing wickets from one end. Pathum Nissanka held one end together and scored 85 runs off 83 balls before getting cleaned up by Farooqi in the 30th over. 

Afghanistan bowlers dominated the middle overs but Hasaranga kept his team alive with an impactful knock of 66 runs off just 46 balls. But he didn't get support from the lower order as Sri Lanka's innings collapsed for just 234 runs in 38 overs. For Afghanistan, Farooqi grabbed four wickets and Gulbadin Naib impressed with three wickets. Ibrahim was adjudged the Player of the Match (POTM) for his match-winning knock.

Here is how Twitter reacted to Afghanistan's victory over Sri Lanka in the first ODI: