Harare: A stupendous century by Dinesh Chandimal led Sri Lanka to a 6-wicket victory, thus showing second-string Indian team the way-out of the tri-nation series here on Saturday.
Chasing a target of 269, Sri Lanka started their innings on a very steady note, though there was an initial hiccup as they lost the wicket of skipper Tilakaratne Dilshan very early in the game. Though Dilshan scored 21 runs, the number on his scorecard came with the help of four superb boundaries.
After Dilshan’s dismissal in the sixth over, Upul Tharanga and Dinesh Chandimal continued with the Lankan innings sturdily. The duo built a 52-run partnership after which, Tharanga gave up his wicket to R Ashwin for 27 runs.
However, Chandimal (111) continued with his feat and not only he achieved a fantabouls century for himself, he also took his team’s score past 200 with some help from Chamara Kapugedera.
Kapugedera gave perfect company to Chandimal and scored a fantastic 42 runs before losing his wicket to Pragyan Ojha.
Soon after Kapugedera’s dismissal, Chandimal too lost his wicket! However, much damage was already done to the Indian team as the his dismissal left Sri Lanka at 215/4, just 49 runs short of the target with 9 overs to spare.
Later, Jeevan Mendis (35) and Thilan Samaraweera (28) completed the final formalities and lead their team to a 6-wicket victory.
A strong 84-run partnership between Yusuf Pathan and Virat Kohli and a late 38-run cameo by Ravichandran Ashwin helped India post a competitive 268/9 against Sri Lanka in their tri-series ODI here on Saturday.
After being asked to bat first by Sri Lankan skipper Tilakaratne Dilshan, India started their campaign on a very dismal note as they lost both their openers, Naman Ojha (1) and Dinesh Karthik (27), early as the team struggled at 41/2.
However, Pathan and Kohli played a much-needed steady game to take India past 100 just a couple of deliveries before the completion of the 20th over.
While Pathan hit a gutsy 44, Kohli claimed his half century by scoring a smashing 68 as their team’s scoreboard displayed 171/4.
Thereafter, Rohit Sharma and skipper Suresh Raina could not continue with the momentum as their dismissals in quick succession again thwarted India.
While Sharma further helped a little to the cause with his 32-run cameo, Raina could score just 19 runs. Raina’s dismissal saw India cross 200 with almost 9 overs to spare.
Later, Ashwin, along with Ravindra Jadeja (19) tried to further push their team’s score but their feat was cut short after Jadeja unfortunate run-out.
However, Ashwin’s 38-run cameo did help India to recover in the late overs as the team concluded it’s innings at 268/9.
India: Suresh Raina (capt), Dinesh Karthik, Naman Ojha, Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma, Yusuf Pathan, Ravindra Jadeja, R Ashwin, Ashok Dinda, Pragyan Ojha, Pankaj Singh.
Sri Lanka: Tillakaratne Dilshan (capt), Upul Tharanga, Chamara Kapugedera, Thilan Samaraweera, Dinesh Chandimal, Ajantha Mendis, Jeevan Mendis, Nuwan Kulasekara, Suraj Randiv, Thissara Perera, Thilan Thushara.