Six-wicket win against Sri Lanka pushes India atop the points table
Tri-Series 4th Match: Sri Lanka vs India at R.Premadasa Stadium, Colombo, Mar 12 - 2018, Cricket highlights
India accomplished the revenge of the loss in the first match of the tri-series, as they defeated Sri Lanka by 6 wickets in a 19-over match. One over per side was reduced due to the delay in start because of rain.
Rohit Sharma, citing that dew will play a crucial role in the later stages of the game, elected to bowl first. His decision, at the start of Sri Lankan innings, proved to be a miscalculated call as the Sri Lankan openers scored 24 runs in the first two overs. Their momentum was, however, broken by Shardul Thakur, who got rid of Danushka Gunathilaka in his very first over. The credit of that wicket should go to Suresh Raina, who took a stunning catch at mid-wicket.
From the other end, Washington Sundar gave a huge blow to the home side by sending Kusal Perera back into the pavilion. The left-hander tried to reverse-sweep Sundar, but only managed to glove the ball back onto his stumps. The two quick wickets helped India to pull things back, albeit only for a brief time.
Kusal Mendis and Upul Tharanga helped Sri Lanka to recover, as they steadied the innings by stitching a 62-run partnership for the third wicket. More than Tharanga, it was Mendis, who did the bulk of the scoring. The right-hander continued his fine form with the bat and scored another excellent fifty – his third in five innings. While Mendis was going at a strike-rate close to 150, Tharanga, on the other hand, struggled with his timing. His misery was ended by Vijay Shankar, who cleaned him up on the score of 96.
On the fall of Tharanga’s wicket, Sri Lanka lost three more wickets, including that of Kusal Mendis (55), in the next three overs and were reduced to 120 for 6. Sri Lanka’s lower-order wasn’t able to contribute much and as a result of this, they were able to score only 152 runs.
From India’s perspective, Shardul Thakur and Washington Sundar were the pick of the bowlers. While the former picked up 4 wickets, including that of the dangerous Thisara Perera, the latter once again bowled brilliantly in the powerplay and also picked up a couple of wickets.
India’s start to the run-chase wasn’t a good one as they lost both their openers, inside the first four overs, for just 22 runs on the board. Both the wickets were picked up by Akila Dananjaya, who was having a dream time out in the middle. He conceded only 10 runs off his first two overs, out of which four were wides.
In the first four overs, India were able to score only 30 runs. Thereafter, it was the cameo from Suresh Raina, which helped the visitors to push the run-rate up.