The 41st match of the ODI World Cup 2023 between New Zealand and Sri Lanka at M. Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bengaluru saw the Blackcaps restrict the Islanders to an approachable total of 171 runs. Trent Boult emerged as the most successful bowler for New Zealand and was the chief destructor in bowling out the Sri Lankan team.

With chances of the Kiwis chasing down the target with ease, the disappointment has loomed over Pakistan fans as it will dent the Green Team’s hopes for a spot in the semi-finals and netizens around the world sparked a meme fest to capture the essence of the moment.

Sri Lankan struggles

Asked to bat first, Sri Lanka’s batting woes were evident from the early stages of the match. Losing wickets at regular intervals, they found themselves grappling at 171 for 10 in 46.4 overs. The fall of wickets read like a script from a cricketing drama, with each dismissal adding more pressure on the Sri Lankan side. Notable collapses included Pathum Nissanka at 3-1 (1.5 overs) and Angelo Mathews at 104-6 (16.4 overs). As the wickets tumbled, the New Zealand bowlers capitalized on every opportunity.

Although Kusal Perera and Maheesh Theekshana tried to hold the fort with scores of 51 (28) and 38 (91), the lethal bowling attack led by Boult (3/37) made sure Sri Lanka faced an uphill battle.

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Impact on Pakistan’s semi-final chances

The modest total of Sri Lanka and New Zealand’s probable high chances of securing a comprehensive victory has sent shockwaves through the hopes of Pakistan’s qualification for the semi-finals. The win effectively will diminish Pakistan’s chances, intensifying the competition.

The memes take over

Netizens wasted no time turning the match into a meme-worthy spectacle, adding a touch of entertainment to the tension. From creative graphics depicting Pakistan fans nervously watching the game to hilarious comparisons between the Sri Lankan batting collapse and various situations, social media platforms were flooded with humour.

Here’s how fans reacted:

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