If the fear was about the rain, that caused an early delay, or spin dictating the proceedings, Mohammed Siraj emerged as a nightmare for the defending Asia Cup champions Sri Lanka in the final on Sunday at the R Premadasa Stadium as he single-handedly wreaked havoc to fold the hosts for the lowest ever score in the history of the continental event and help them notch up a 10-wicket victory.
It was India's first multinational tournament title since the 2018 Asia Cup.
Such was the destruction from Siraj that while cricket completed his five-wicket haul in just 16 balls en route to his record six-fer, Sri Lanka were bundled in just 15.2 overs.
Bowling a spell like this was a dream-come-true moment for the right-arm fast bowler.
"It feels like a dream. Last time I did the same against Sri Lanka at Trivandrum. I got four wickets early, but couldn't get the five-for. I realised you get what's in your destiny," Siraj told Sanjay Manjrekar during the innings break.
Siraj, who is a good exponent of the wobble seam, got most of his wickets with the outswinger.
"I did not try too much today. I have always looked for swing in white-ball cricket but did not find much in the previous games. But today it was swinging, and I got more wickets with the outswinger. I wanted to make the batters drive," he added.
The target was a walk in the park for Shubman Gill and Ishan Kishan as they finished the chase in no time.
It started with Jasprit Bumrah providing the breakthrough in the very first over of the match after Sri Lanka had opted to bowl first. After that it was all about Siraj. He began with a maiden over before picking four wickets in his second over where at one point he even stood on the verge of picking up a hat-trick and became the first ever Indian bowler to scalp four wickets in a single over.
Siraj completed his five-wicket haul in his next over, in just 16 balls, the joint-fastest by a bowler alongside Sri Lanka legend Chaminda Vaas in ODI cricket. And later completed his six-fer in the 12th over by dismissal Kusal Mendis. The right-arm pacer eventually finished with 6 for 21, the best figure by an Indian bowler in an Asia Cup (ODI) match and second-best overall after Ajantha Mendis' 6 for 13 against India in Karachi in 2008. It is also the best figures against Sri Lanka in an ODI match, surpassing Waqar Younis' 6/26 in Sharjah in 1990.
After Siraj was taken off the attack, Hardik Pandya picked the remaining three wickets to fold Sri Lanka for just 50 runs. It is the lowest score for an ODI team in Asia Cup, surpassing Bangladesh's total of 87 against Pakistan in 2000.
This is also their second-lowest score in an ODI match after 43 against South Africa in Paarl in 2012. The total of 50 also made it to the top in the lowest ever score by a team in an ODI final, breaking India's feat of 54 against Sri Lanka in Sharjah in 2000, and lowest ODI totals against India.