Sri Lanka (Asalanka 62*, Samarawickrama 54, Shakib 2-29) beat Bangladesh 164 (Shanto 89, Pathirana 4-32, Theekshana 2-19) by five wickets
Charith Asalanka and Sadeera Samarawickrama each scored fifty as Sri Lanka opened their Asia Cup campaign with a five-wicket victory over Bangladesh, despite a tense pursuit in lethargic conditions.
Sri Lanka now have a foot in the Super 4 stage, while Bangladesh must win against Afghanistan to advance.
Asalanka’s unbeaten 62 off 92 deliveries on a two-paced Pallekele pitch and against a Bangladesh bowling unit that gave little away was exactly what was required on a two-paced Pallekele surface.
When Asalanka joined Samarawickrama in the middle, Sri Lanka was struggling at 43 for 3 with a target of just 165 runs.
Previously, Dimuth Karanuratne had played a full in-ducker from Taskin Ahmed and Kusal Mendis had been castled by a Shakib Al Hasan arm ball. Pathum Nissanka had cut and clipped a short, wide one from Shoriful Islam in between.
Early wickets are crucial when defending a low total, and Bangladesh believed they were still in the game at that moment, but Sri Lanka had Samarawickrama, the ideal bowler for such a situation.