India registered yet another series victory and whitewashed the Lankans to extend the latter’s plight to 2018. The series saw the experienced guys playing well to rookies put forward some inspiring displays to prove that they have it in them to be consistent performers for the national team.
Rohit Sharma (7/10): The T20I series was just another validation of his immense talent and ability to hit clean without putting in a lot of power. Rohit Sharma always comes across as a supremely-talented batsman and in Indore, he showcased why there is no better timer of a cricket ball than him. However, he failed in the first and third match of the series scoring 17 and 27 runs respectively. Sri Lanka should consider that as a moral victory.
KL Rahul (7.5/10): The Karnataka opener rekindled his hopes of making his way back to the 50-over format by hitting two successive fifty-plus scores in the series. Although Sri Lanka’s wayward bowling display was the main reason for the carnage, nothing could be taken away from the talented batsman who has found a new lease of life after the series. Albeit he did almost everything right, he couldn’t replicate the first two matches performance in the last game and scored only four runs off nine balls.
Shreyas Iyer (6/10): The Mumbaikar is capable of marrying classical shots with brute force and his attacking instincts were in full flow in the second and third ODIs, but he didn’t get sufficient time in the last two T20Is. However, when he finally got a chance in the last T20I, he was rusty with the bat and failed to go past anything more than 30 runs despite playing 32 balls.
Manish Pandey (7.5/10
MS Dhoni (7/10): The former India skipper was promoted two times in the series and while he was successful with the bat in the first match, he failed to replicate the magic in the second match. However, Dhoni’s contribution to the team was beyond stats and he has the ability to inspire the entire team through his words behind the stumps. In the third match, with the game being evenly poised, he, along with Karthik, helped India secure a five-wicket win.
Dinesh Karthik (6.5/10): The Tamil Nadu batsman did not get a chance to bat in the last match and after Rohit’s carnage at the top of the order in Indore, he could only face two balls and managed to score 5 runs, including a first-ball boundary. However, he was unbeaten in the last game and was a livewire on the field throughout the series.
Hardik Pandya (6/10): Pandya was the most economical of all bowlers and gave away only 6.90 runs per over in Indore. But he failed with the bat spectacularly in the series and needs to pull up his socks as an average of 10.71 doesn’t do justice to a player who has made a name for himself through big hits in the shortest format of the game.
Washington Sundar (7.5/10): The Tamil Nadu teenager had a decent ODI debut in Mohali where he claimed his maiden ODI wicket on just the ninth ball. With the conditions making the ball wet, he found it difficult to grip the ball well. However, after becoming the youngest Indian to make his T20I debut, he bowled really well and gave away only 22 runs while opening the bowling for the team.
Jaydev Unadkat (8/10): Despite being a consistent performer at the domestic level, luck had always deserted Unadkat at the highest level. Having been fast-tracked into Test cricket in 2010, Unadkat had to wait another three years to play a One-Day International and although he impressed in the second ODI he played, picking up four wickets, more opportunities never really came his way. But after doing exceptionally well in the 2015-16 Ranji Trophy season for Saurashtra, and doing well in the Indian Premier League where he picked 24 wickets - the second most after Bhuvneshwar Kumar - at an average of 13.41 and an economy of a shade over seven, he was back in the contention and proved his selection by grabbing the man of the series award in the T20I series. He was parsimonious with the ball in the series and didn’t allow the batsmen any room to open their arms.
Yuzvendra Chahal (8/10): The Haryana leggie was impressive with the ball in Indore as he along with his partner in crime Kuldeep Yadav, shared seven wickets between them to bowl Sri Lanka out inside 18 overs to hand India an unassailable 2-0 lead in the series. He became the first bowler to pick up two consecutive four-
Kuldeep Yadav (6.5/10): Despite being among the wickets, the series for Kuldeep would be a forgettable one as he went for runs in almost every match. He needs to learn how to contain runs in the shortest format of the game.
Jasprit Bumrah -(6.5/10): Bumrah, the spearhead of the attack, was surprisingly silent in the series and failed to pick up a wicket in the two matches he played. But that didn’t take away his importance as he led the way with parsimonious bowling display. He would have loved to come back in wickets at the Wankhede, but the team management decided to rest him for the match.
Mohammed Siraj (6/10): The Hyderabad pacer has continued his disastrous run of form in the international cricket and yet again failed to leave a mark. His four overs cost India 45 runs and although he picked up a wicket, that wouldn’t have given him a sound sleep given Basil Thampi is eagerly awaiting on the bench.
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