Team India ended up on the winning side of the result against Sri Lanka in their Asia Cup 2023 Super Fours match but not before the islanders gave them a proper scare owing to an individual performance of a lifetime by left-arm spinning all-rounder Dunith Wellalage. Wellalage, the 20-year-old spinner, ran riot destroying the Indian top order as soon as he was introduced in the attack in the 12th over of the innings.
All three of Shubman Gill, skipper Rohit Sharma who was batting on 53 and Virat Kohli, who was coming off an unbeaten 122 off just 94 balls against Pakistan got out to Wellalage in a span of 11 runs. Even though KL Rahul and Ishan Kishan put a tape on the leaking tap for a while but it was Wellalage who ripped it off with the wicket of the right-hander.
Wellalage dismissed Indian vice-captain, Hardik Pandya, to complete a memorable five-wicket haul. Wellalage was responsible for Sri Lanka's fightback with the bat as well, as he remained unbeaten on 42 off 46 deliveries and was part of the 63-run stand with Dhananjaya de Silva but lack of contributions from the top order and middle order failed his individual performance.
For India, a new bowler, or someone who they are playing for the first time continues to remain a mystery but KL Rahul was confident that they will be able to solve the Wellalage mystery, the next time they face him. Rahul even fired a warning for Wellalage that Indian batters will take him on when they face him next.
Speaking at the post-match press conference, Rahul said, "He was spot on. He got five wickets and got the job done for his team. He looked the most dangerous bowler from the Sri Lankan attack till I was playing. What more can I say? He got five top-order batsmen out.
Obviously, Asalanka also picked up a few wickets later on. It was a good day for him, he did well with the bat too. Probably next time we play him, we will go after him," he added.
India have qualified for the final while Sri Lanka play a depleted Pakistan in a do-or-die clash to face India again in the summit clash.