Sidra’s 123, Fatima’s four-fer earns Pakistan series win

F.P. Report

KARACHI: Sidra Amin scored the second century of her ODI career as Pakistan sealed a 2-0 series win with a match to spare in the ICC Women’s Championship encounter against Sri Lanka at the Southend Club, Karachi on Friday.

After recording a comprehensive eight-wicket win in the first match on Wednesday, the Sidra inspired Pakistan produced an all-round show to record a thumping 73-run win.

Sidra’s commanding batting performance was followed by another outstanding spell by young pacer Fatima Sana who took four Sri Lankan wickets.

Sri Lanka were never quite in the hunt of the 254-run target. Openers Hasini Perera (14) and captain Chamari Athapaththu (16) were sent back with only 31 runs on the board in 12.1 overs. The visitors failed to break the shackles and lost wickets as they attempted to up the scoring rate. Hansima Karunaratne (27) and Prasadani Weerakkody (20) consumed 101 balls in the middle overs.

Kavisha Dilhari who scored an unbeaten 49 in the first match scored 32 off 35 balls (two fours) but her departure via a stump out in the 39th over drew curtains to Sri Lanka’s efforts.

The visitors kept losing wickets as the lower-order succumbed to probing bowling by Pakistan bowlers. Fatima Sana who had accounted for Perera in her opening spell dismissed Oshadi Ranasinghe and Sachini Nisansala off successive balls in the 42nd over. Fatima Sana added her fourth when she dismissed Nilakshi de Silva for 17.

Fatima Sana finished with four wickets for 26 in her 10 overs, she bowled three maidens. Omaima Sohail took two for 35. Sri Lanka finished their 50 overs at 180 for nine.

Earlier, for the first time on the tour, Pakistan captain Bismah Maroof won the toss and opted to bat first. Sidra and Muneeba Ali combined to post Pakistan’s first-ever century plus opening-stand in ODIs.

The two were involved in a 158-run partnership which comfortably beat the previous best of 96 between Javeria Khan and Nahida Khan against England at Kuala Lumpur in 2019.

The left-handed Muneeba registered the second fifty of her ODI career. She was dismissed by Oshadi Ranasinghe for 56 off 100 balls (three fours).

Sidra reached the second century of her career on the 137th ball of her innings. The seasoned batter who had scored 76 in the first match produced another dazzling display to dominate the Sri Lankan attack.

Sidra went past her previous best of 104 and was just 10 runs shy of Pakistan’s all-time highest ODI score (133 by Javeria Khan) when she was dismissed for 123 (150 ball, 11 fours). Sidra added 74 runs for the second-wicket with Bismah. She has now joined Javeria as Pakistan most prolific ODI century scorer (two each).

Bismah who remained unbeaten on 36 off 43 balls, went past Javeria’s tally of 2885 runs to reach the top of Pakistan women’s run-getters list in the ODI format when she reached 31. Nida Dar scored 10 off seven including a four off the last ball to help the hosts get past the 250-run mark.

The third and final ODI will be played on Sunday.

Scores in brief: Pakistan beat Sri Lanka by 73 runs

Pakistan 253 for 2, 50 overs (Sidra Amin 123, Muneeba Ali 56, Bismah Maroof 36 not out; Kavisha Dilhari 1-43

Sri Lanka 180 for 9, 50 overs (Harshitha Madavi 41, Kavisha Dilhari 32; Fatima Sana 4-26, Omaima Sohail 2-35)

Player-of-the-match: Sidra Amin.