On Thursday, October 26, Pathum Nissanka etched his name into the annals of cricketing history during the ICC World Cup 2023. The young Sri Lankan opener secured a remarkable record by becoming only the second player to amass 1,000 One-Day International runs in the year 2023, following in the footsteps of India’s prodigious talent, Shubman Gill, who leads the charts with an astounding 1,325 runs.
Nissanka’s momentous achievement unfolded when he dispatched England seamer Chris Woakes for a boundary on the fourth delivery of the seventh over in Sri Lanka’s run-chase, propelling his score to an impressive 15 not out. The resolute right-handed batsman firmly cemented his position as Gill’s closest contender in the One-Day run-scoring leaderboard and joined the elite club of players who have reached the 1,000-run milestone in the current calendar year.
While the year 2023 has witnessed Shubman Gill’s meteoric rise to prominence, establishing himself as India’s formidable top-order maestro, it has also been a period of remarkable growth for Pathum Nissanka. He has emerged as one of the key pillars of the relatively inexperienced Sri Lankan batting lineup.
Gill has rightfully garnered praise from fans and experts alike for making the most of his prodigious talent, displaying an explosive batting style with a strike rate of 104.49, all while maintaining an average well above 60 for his incredible tally of runs. On the other hand, Nissanka has carved a more serene path to success, relying on his artistry and elegance to achieve a respectable strike rate of 87.44 and an average just shy of 47.
Notably, Nissanka embarked on Sri Lanka’s run-chase against England, a target of 156 runs, in Bangalore, a mere 15 runs away from achieving the coveted 1,000-run milestone. At the age of 25, he found himself ahead of Indian cricketing legends Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli in the list of top run-scorers for the year 2023.
Impressively, Nissanka reached this milestone in only his 25th innings in the calendar year, despite the limited number of One-Day International matches. He has showcased exceptional form in the ongoing competition, amassing 198 runs in just five innings, boasting an average close to 42 and an impressive strike rate of 91.24. His consistent performance underscores his rising stature as a prominent figure in the world of cricket.