India opt to field against Sri Lanka in one-off T20I

Read Also: India 9, Sri Lanka 0Yadav got few chances on this tour, playing in the third Test at Pallekele as substitute for the suspended Ravindra Jadeja. Starting with the first ODI on 17 September in Chennai, India will be engaged in a tough limited-over battle with the Aussies till October 13. The last time when India played a T20I match, skipper Virat Kohli opened the batting and if he decides to do that again, Ajinkya Rahane might have to sit out. The game was competitive but when India has Virat Kohli in the kind of form that he is in, there is no doubt about the victory.

India needed 10 runs to win when Kohli eventually fell in the penultimate over and Pandey sealed victory with a boundary which also brought up his fifty.

Earlier, India won the toss and chose to field. Unlike the Tests and ODIs, the Lankans had a superb start. Sri Lanka squandered the opportunity to salvage some pride, folding up for a below-par 238 in 49.4 overs after paceman Bhuvneshwar Kumar grabbed a career-best five for 42. MS Dhoni, under pressure with focus on his diminishing skills as a finisher, found second wind in Sri Lanka. Dhoni was quick enough to pick the ball and dislodge the bails. He opened up in the 12th over to take on Angelo Mathews, helping India canter past 100.

Later, Ashan Priyanjan and Dilshan Munaweera continued the innings ahead. Rohit Sharma (9) was out first, miscuing a hit for a catch to Thisara Perera after being frustrated by some dot balls from fast bowler Lasith Malinga. Both the batsmen added 37 runs for the 4th wicket before Chinaman Kuldeep Yadav dismissed risky looking Munaweera on 53. With nothing to lose, they went after the Indian bowlers and even with two down, the Lions ticked the run-rate at a healthy pace.

Chahal too picked up wickets at regular intervals but was quite expensive as he gave away 43 runs while he picked up four wickets.

Two overs later, Chahal returned to strike a double blow as he bowled Perera and then trapped Dasun Shanaka (0) LBW in the space of four balls. Chinaman spinner Kuldeep Yadav was the most economical at 2/20.

In the process, Priyanjan played som eludricous shots, but one stood out.

  • Carolyn Briggs