Riding on a swashbuckling 132* from Shikhar Dhawan and an equally aggressive 82* from Virat Kohli India crushed Sri Lanka by 9 wickets in the first ODI at Dambulla. Earlier, another batting collapse from Sri Lanka after a good start meant that they were dismissed for a paltry total of 216.
Winning his fourth consecutive toss of the tour, Virat Kohli put Sri Lanka into bat on a hot day at in Dambulla. While Virat Kohli announced that Ajinkya Rahane, Manish Pandey, Umesh Yadav and Shardul Thakur had missed the cut in the playing XI for the first ODI. Sri Lanka, on the other hand, handed a debut to
Dickwella and Mendis puts hosts in commanding position
Sri Lanka got off to a good start as Niroshan Dickwella and Danushka Gunathilaka came out with with a positive approach and took on the likes of Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Hardik Pandya in the initial stages of the game. Gunathilaka took a special liking to Pandya’s bowling in the eighth over smashing 11 runs which included two boundaries as the duo managed to take Sri Lanka to 55 for no loss at the end of 10 overs. Given that both the openers looked comfortable with pace on the ball, Kohli decided to change things up and brought Yuzvendra Chahal into the attack. The move paid dividends as the leg spinner dismissed Gunathilaka for a well-made 35 in the 14th over. The wicket brought Kusal Mendis to the crease who made his intentions clear from the onset as he and Dickwella ensured that the home side maintained a good run rate of more than a run a ball. Together, the duo quickly consolidated the Sri Lankan innings as they managed to find the boundaries seemingly at will, smashing 10 and 14 runs
Sri Lanka suffer yet another batting collapse
At this point, Kohli understood that the Lankans were having trouble facing the Indian spinners and decided to persist with them for the remainder of the innings. The tactic paid off as Axar Patel cleaned up Mendis for 36 in the 28th over. The wicket slowed down the Sri Lankan innings as Matthews and Tharanga failed to find the gaps to keep the scoreboard ticking. The lack of runs,
Dhawan blitz too hot to handle for Lanka
Chasing a paltry 217 to win India got off to a good as Shikhar Dhawan and Rohit Sharma managed to find the boundaries consistently to take India to 21 for no loss after four overs. In the fifth over, however, the partnership was broken when Rohit Sharma was run out by an alert throw from Chamara Kapugedera. Kohli joined Dhawan at the crease at ensured that Sri Lanka