Several top cricketers from across the world, including former greats from Pakistan, congratulated Sri Lanka for their amazing victory in the Asia Cup final against Pakistan at the Dubai International Stadium on Sunday night.
Former Pakistan skipper Wasim Akram said Sri Lanka came into the final with the mind-set that they had to clinch the trophy.A collective impressive performance by Bhanuka Rajapaksa, Wanindu Hasaranga and Pramod Madushan led Sri Lanka to the title with a clinical 23-run win.
This is Sri Lanka's sixth Asia Cup title 1986, 1997, 2004, 2008, 2014 and 2022. After losing their opening game against Afghanistan, Sri Lanka beat Bangladesh, Afghanistan, India, Pakistan and then again Pakistan to clinch the 2022 Asia Cup.
"Winning isn't everything, it's the only thing. That was the mantra of this amazing Sri Lankan team so congratulations... better team won (the trophy) in the end," wrote Akram.Shahid Afridi "appreciated" the way the Sri Lankan cricketers played the entire tournament with a positive mind-set.
"When I was watching the start of the match it looked like that Pakistan will make the match one-sided, and at the end Sri Lanka made it one-sided. Have to appreciate the @OfficialSLC played the entire tournament sp todays final, you deserve #AsiaCup2022, congrats and well played."
Several other Pakistani cricketers lauded Sri Lanka for their efforts on Sunday with Saeed Ajmal too saying the islanders were deserving winners. However, Kamran Akmal and Mohammad Hafeez expressed disappointment with Pakistan's performance, saying this should be a lesson for the side ahead of the ICC T20 World Cup in Australia next month.
"Disappointed! not the result we wanted Hard Luck @TheRealPCB boys. Congratulations @OfficialSLC on being champions #AsiaCup2022 Standout performance..have shown their Obsession passion and resilience for the title... they played another level cricket... scintillating performance," said Akmal.
Hafeez was more critical of the performance, saying, "Team Pakistan should learn from this defeat in #AsiaCup2022. Think tank of the team must take immediate decisions to make the best team for T20 World Cup 2022. @TheRealPCB."
Sri Lanka greats such as Kumar Sangakkara and Mahela Jayawardene too took to social media to congratulate their side."Good toss to lose boys !! Showed character and passion to play for the country and so proud of each and every one enjoy the victory as entire country will.. brilliant team effort #AsiaCup2022," said Jayawardene, while Sangakkara tweeted, "@OfficialSLC @dasunshanaka1 @BhanukaRajapak3 amazing win and thoroughly deserved. Played like a team of true champions. You have kept inspiring as a side."