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Asian Games Cricket Final: India v Sri Lanka - All you need to know

After two fairly one-sided semifinals, India women take on Sri Lanka in the final of the Asian Games cricket in Hangzhou on Monday.

Asian Games Cricket Final: India v Sri Lanka - All you need to know

India will take on Sri Lanka in the women's cricket gold medal match at 2 pm IST on Monday. (BCCI)


Syed Tawsif Ahmed

Updated: 24 Sep 2023 10:14 PM GMT

The Indian women's cricket team will face off against Sri Lanka in the gold medal match of the Asian Games on Monday.

India's journey to the final of the 19th Asian Game hasn’t been very testing, but the players have been clinical in the clutch moments thus far.

India started their campaign in the Asian Games as the winner against Malaysia in the quarterfinals being the highest seed in the tournament after play was called off due to heavy rain.

After a strong performance with the bat, India only got to bowl 2 balls before the match was called off, and India qualified for the semifinals.

The stage was set for a well-anticipated semifinal against Bangladesh. On Sunday, Indian bowlers excelled on the occasion as India eased past the Bangladesh challenge to secure their spot in the gold medal match.

Bangladesh captain, Nigar Sultana Joty elected to bat first. In came Pooja Vastrakar to show her skills with the new ball along with Titas Sadhu, who made her debut for the senior women's team.

Together, they pierced through the Bangladesh top-order, and Pooja scalped four wickets in the powerplay. A clinical bowling performance complimented by some great fielding ensured that Bangladesh was bowled out for 51 with Vastrakar, registering her career-best performance of 4 for 7.

India chased down the target of 52 runs with eight wickets in hand only in the ninth over, thanks to a mature innings by Jemimah (20 not out) after stand-in skipper Smriti Mandhana lost her wicket early in the fourth over.

Sri Lanka, on the other hand, started their journey in the Asian Games with an eight-wicket win over Thailand in the quarterfinal. They were the only side among the four teams in the semifinals to qualify for the last four after defeating their opponents and not based on a higher ICC ranking.

In an epic Asian rivalry, they took on Pakistan in the second semifinal. Chamari Athapaththu won the toss and elected to bowl first. The Sri Lankan bowlers stepped up and restricted Pakistan to a mere 75 for 9 in 20 overs. Udeshika Prabodhani took three wickets for 21, while Kavishi Dilhari got two wickets in exchange for 15 runs.

After an explosive start with the bat, the Sri Lankan captain was removed in the fourth over followed by two other batters by the end of the eighth over. They looked in a bit of trouble before Harshita Samarawickrama (23) and Nilakshi de Silva (18 not out) managed to put up a 35-run partnership and took their team home. Sri Lanka won the match by six wickets.

Both India and Sri Lanka are familiar rivals so the game promises to be a thrilling contest.

After a historic series win against England at home earlier this year, the Sri Lankan side has emerged as a strong unit, with their captain, Chamari Athapaththu, leading from the front.

Meanwhile, it will be interesting to see whether captain Harmanpreet Kaur, who missed the first two matches due to a two-match ban imposed on her since India's tour of Bangladesh, makes a comeback in the team and takes over the charge from Mandhana.

It is India’s first appearance in the Asian Games. However, Sri Lanka is competing in the quadrennial event for the second time, having won a bronze medal back in 2014.

On the previous occasions when women’s cricket has featured in the Asian Games (2010 and 2014), Pakistan won the gold medal. However, history will be rewritten on Monday as the Asian Games set to get a new champion.

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