Sri Lanka all-rounder Dasun Shanaka has become the first-ever player to score 50-plus runs in the death overs of a T20I chase.
The right-hander walked in when his side was reeling at 98/5 while chasing the 177-run target. A true captain’s knock from Dasun Shanaka completely outfoxed the opposition bowlers as Sri Lanka registered a final-over victory in the the third T20I.
With 59 needed in the final three overs, the hosts had a tough ask ahead of themselves. But Shanaka, refusing to give up, put up a brilliant display of batting, taking the Australia bowlers to the cleaners. After Chamika Karunaratne gave Shanaka the strike with a single off Hazlewood, the Lanka captain smashed two sixes and two fours in quick succession to the cheers of the crowd.
The equation read 37 in 12 balls and Shanaka this time pounced on Jhye Richardson to slam more runs. A six and two fours came in the penultimate over to leave Sri Lanka 19 off the final one to make it home.
Kane Richardson started the last over nervously with two wides, a couple of singles later and with 15 needed off four, Shanka hit back to back fours and a six to ease off the pressure, bringing up a superb fifty and ultimately leading the hosts to an exhilarating win.
Australia and Sri Lanka will next play the five-match ODI series between June 14 to 24, with the first two to be held in Pallekele and the remaining three to take place in Colombo.