Sri Lanka tripped it up again letting India off the hook from 86 for 4 after 14.2 overs chasing 215 as the hosts recovered from a fifth wicket partnership of 75 runs between K.L. Rahul (64) nd Hardik Pandya (36) to win by 4 wickets reaching 219 for 6 off 43..2 overs after bowling out the Lankans for 215 in just 39 overs in Thursday’s day-night at Eden Gardens Kolkata to already secure the 3-match ODI series with two straight wins.
All the good work of having big guns Rohit Sharma (17), Virat Kohli (04) and Shubman Gill (21) and Shreyas Iyer (28) went asunder as the Indians rallied on the Rahul-Pandya alliance. When Pandya was fifth out with the score 161 after 34.1 overs India had swung the game their way. It was certainly a bad feeling for Lankans having watched Sharma sent back by Chamika Karunaratne caught behind by Kusal Mendis and Kohli clean bowled by Lahiru Kumara who also accounted for opener Shubman Gill whom he had caught by Avishka Fernando in a 2-wicket burst having come in for the injured Dilshan Madushanka while Kasun Rajitha trapped Iyer leg before wicket. When the sixth wicket that of Azar Patel (21) fell caught by Karunaratne off Dhananjaya de Silva India was well on the road to victory at 191 for 6 after 39.5.
The Lankan batting too tripped from a healthy 107 for 2 from 17 overs to 126 for 6 that negated a 79-run second wicket partnership between 23-year old debutante Nuwanidu Fernando who capped his entry to the big stage with a calculated half century. But existing by a run out was a cruel fate when a wobbly frontline needed him to continue as Dhananjaya de Silva fell for a duck,.Charith Asalanka for 15 and skipper Dasun Shanaka for 2. The innings was revived by Dunith Wellalage who stroked 34 off 32 with a six and 3 boundaries in taking the score to 215 when he was ninth out second ball of the 39th over. In that defeat of course both Nuwanidu Fernando and Wellalage had made a bold statement with the bat having got the nod – Fernando, the right-hander having made it from being kept under wraps for quite long and Wellalage his first outing in the series.
Fernando, opening the innings with Avishka Fernando (20), hit 8 boundaries while Mendis hit 3 and a six in a run a ball 34.
CHIEF SCORES: Sri Lanka 215.(39 Overs) (Nuwanidu Fernando 50. Kusal Mendis 34, Dunith Wellalage 32, Wanindu Hasaranga de Silva 21, Charith Asalanka 15, Chamika Karunaratne 17, Rajitha n o. 17, Kuldeep Yadav 3/51, Mohammed Siraj 3/36, Umran Malik 2/48,.Azar Patel 1/10)
India 219/6 (43.2 Overs) (K.L.. Rahul n.o. 64, Hardik Pandya 36, Azar Patel 21, Shreyas Iyer 28, Kuldeep Yadav n.o. 10, Chamika Karunaratne 2/51, Lahiru Kumara 2/64, Dhananjaya de Silva 1/9, Kasun Rajitha 1/46). * Player of the Match Kuldeep Yadav