Sri Lanka skipper praised team India for their sensational performance as he admitted that the visitors performed terrifically in all three departments. He also revealed that they made plans for Shikhar Dhawan but all was in vain as he scored 190 in the first innings.
After scoring 600 runs in first innings, India restricted the Sri Lankan team to just 291 runs in their first innings and then dismissed them for 245 in their second innings on the fourth day to complete a comfortable win and lead the three-match series 1-0. Sri Lanka’s stand-in skipper Rangana Herath gave all the credit to Indian team who outclassed them in all departments of the game.
"You can't be satisfied with a defeat. We bowled badly, fielded badly and batted badly in the first innings. We are a better team than that. We need to find out how we can do better than this moving forward," said Herath.
"When you lose a game you are disappointed. But having said that, all credit to India for the way they played. They played outstanding cricket in all three departments. They deserve all the credit," he added.
Herath took the responsibility of captaincy in the absence of Dinesh Chandimal. Chandimal was named Sri Lanka’s new Test skipper but was ruled out of the Galle Test after being admitted to a hospital with pneumonia. In the recently concluded Galle Test, Asela Gunaratne and Herath himself got injured, which added to the hosts' woes.
"Losing Aseala was a massive blow for us and he will be out for eight weeks. He has been scoring lot of runs for us in the last few months. He wasn't available to bat or bowl and that was a huge blow for us," he said.
India dominated from the first day of the game thanks to a splendid 190 by Shikhar Dhawan and a century from Cheteshwar Pujara. Herath applauded Dhawan’s brilliant knock and admitted that his innings took the game away from the Lankan Lions as all their plans against him proved ineffectual.
"We had a few plans for him but we failed to execute. If you take for example we allowed him too much of width. In the first session of the match itself the game started slipping away from us," he said.
"We bounced back well but he had by then got off to a terrific start. Some of our plans went very well but we were not 100 per cent perfect. That's the reason they went onto post 600 runs in their first innings," said Herath.
In the first Test, the only positive for Sri Lanka was Nuwan Pradeep’s performance who picked up career-best figures of 6/132 in the first innings of India.
"I think it was after a long time a fast bowler has taken a five-wicket haul in Galle. There's so much of burden on spinners when we play in Sri Lanka and Pradeep bowling so well and taking so many wickets will be a huge plus point for us moving forward. He was outstanding in this game and his effort was fantastic," he concluded.
The second Test will be played in Colombo starting August 3.
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