Ashwin’s four-fer destroys Sri Lanka as India win series 2-1

Ashwin’s four-fer destroys Sri Lanka as India win series 2-1

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Image Courtesy: © Facebook - Sri Lanka Cricket

Avenging the embarrassing defeat they received in the first T20I at Pune, India dished out the same treatment to their Sri Lankan counterparts by bowling them out for 82 before romping home in 14 overs to register a nine-wicket victory to win the series 2-1 in the third T20I in Visakhapatnam on Sunday.

Brief Scores: Sri Lanka 82 all-out in 17.5 overs ( Shanaka19(24), Ashwin 4/8, Raina 2/6) lost to India 84/1 in 13.5 overs (Dhawan 46*(46), Rahane 22*(24), Chameera 1/14) by nine wickets

Chasing 83, the Indian openers made a good start to the innings with Dhawan and Rohit going after the bowling to finish the match in a hurry. 29 were added at a brisk pace, but the Men in Blue lost the wicket of Rohit in the fifth over with the Mumbai cricketer getting trapped to a straight one from Chameera. Rahane walked in next and laced one over point to the boundary to signal his arrival to the crease.

Dhawan and Rahane slowly took the innings forward by collecting singles and twos with India needing only 3.6 runs per over. The Sri Lankan team looked completely lost in the final few hours with the Indian batsmen strolling to victory. The win arrived in the 14th over with Dhawan smashing Gunara over cover to lead the team to 2-1 series win.

For the third time in the series, India opted to select the same XI ignoring the likes of Pawan Negi and Harbhajan Singh, who have been warming the bench. Sri Lanka, on the other hand, made three changes to the team that lost at Ranchi by bringing in Asela Gunaratne, Dilhara Fernando and Niroshan Dickwella coming in for Chamara Kapugedera, Kasun Rajitha, and Danushka Gunathilaka.

Dhoni won the toss and opted to field on what looked like a batting-friendly track. Ashwin opened the bowling and send back Dickwella with his third ball of the innings. The left-hand opener jumped out of the crease in search of a slog, but the ball spun away from him into Dhoni’s hands to execute an easy stumping. Dilshan followed his partner into the pavilion three balls later after Ashwin trapped the veteran in front of the stumps.

The Sri Lankan batsmen looked in a hurry with skipper Chandimal jumping out of the crease and smashing Nehra for two boundaries in the second over. But the attempt for a third cost him his wicket the next over. A slog against Ashwin proved costly as the Sri Lankan skied the ball giving a catch to Pandya. The wickets continued to tumble as Ashwin picked up his fourth in the third over after Gunaratne edged one down the leg side to Raina at leg slip.

Nehra cleaned up Siriwardana in the next over to leave Sri Lanka looking down the barrel at 21 for 5. Dhoni brought on Yuvraj in the seventh over, and Shanaka welcomed the left-armer by smashing him for back-to-back sixes. But a brilliant bit of fielding from Jadeja led to the downfall of his partner Seekuge Prasanna at the other end with the all-rounder’s under-arm throw finding him short of the crease.

Shanaka kept the scoring going with some lusty blows before falling to a straight one from Jadeja in the 11th over, with an inside edge crashing into the stumps. The last three wickets added 28 runs to the score before stumbling for 82 in the 18th over. 

(Also Read: Our pick for the winners and losers of IPL 2016 after the spending spree)

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