Posted by Gareth Parry Added on: August 08 2012
India 155 for 3 (Kohli 68, Raina 34*, Eranga 2-30) beat Sri Lanka 116 (Mathews 31, Dinda 4-19, Irfan 3-27) by 39 runs
India finished their successful tour of Sri Lanka with a comfortable win in the only Twenty20 match. Both sides played strong sides with the aim of starting their preparations for the upcoming World Twenty20 with the Indians showing excellent form.
The Sri Lankans elected to field when they won the toss and will have been pleased to restrict the visitors to 155 after India made an excellent start.
Kohli continued his impressive form and raced past 50 as he dominated his sides scoring as he and Rahane added 74 for the second wicket in just 9.5 overs. He top scored with 68 from just 48 balls. The quality of his driving through the off side was a feature of his innings as he dominated the Sri Lankan pace bowlers.
However when Kohli fell, caught in the deep, the Indian innings lost it's momentum. Dhoni and Raina, two excellent finishers, were only able to add 26 runs from the final 3.3 overs meaning the visitors fell short of 160 when it looked likely they would post a target well in excess of 175.
The Sri Lankan bowlers should take the credit for restricting the scoring with Malinga once again showing his quality as a Twenty20 bowler. The débutante, Eranga, also deserves considerable praise for his display. He gained good swing movement and troubled the Indian batsmen throughout with his figures of 4-0-30-2 a well deserved return. He also became the first man ever to pick up a wicket in his first over of all three forms of international cricket.
In spite of the efforts of their bowlers to wrestle the home side back into contention the total proved too much for the Sri Lankan batsmen.
They made a brisk start with Jayawardene, Thirimanne and Mathews all scoring quickly. However, whilst they were up with the scoring rate, Sri Lanka lost wickets regularly. They were six wickets down before the end of the 15th over with Indian pressing home their advantage.
Irfan Pathan's bowling was the performance that did the damage. His figures of 4-0-27-3, whilst not the best of the match, were the most impressive as his three wickets were the top three Sri Lankan batsmen. Dinda was the leading wicket taker with figures of 3-1-19-4 but he profited from the fact he was bowling at the Sri Lankan lower order. His figures were boosted by three wickets picked up in the final over of the match as he ran through the tail.
Sri Lanka were dismissed for 116 to lose by 39 runs. The Indian display was very impressive and was an excellent way to start their preparations for the World T20.