Sri Lanka vs India 1st T20I

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Sri Lanka vs. India 1st T20I, Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Suryakumar Yadav Star in India's Easy Victory

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Monday, 26th July 2021

Suryakumar Yadav's golden batting run was beautifully complemented by the Indian bowling unit led by Bhuvneshar Kumar as the visitors defeated Sri Lanka by 38 runs in the first T20 International here on Sunday. If Surya's second T20 International half-century — an appealing 50 off 34 balls — is any indication, Yuzvendra Chahal (1/19 in 4 overs) oozed class, while Deepak Chahar (2/24 in 3 overs) and Bhuvneshwar Kumar (4/22 in 3.3 overs) picked up wickets when it mattered the most, bowling the hosts out for 126 in 18.3 overs. In fact, Sri Lanka lost their last six wickets for only 15 runs after reaching 111/4 in the 16th over.

In what will be his final international audition before the T20 World Cup, Chahal gave it his all in the presence of IPL star and debutant mystery spinner Varun Chakravarthy, who, according to rumour, may be the Indian team management's choice for the marquee event.

Chahal not only bowled 10 dots in addition to the 'jaffa delivery' to remove Dhanajaya de Silva, but he also bowled a superb 15th over with only three runs conceded. Dhawan introduced Krunal Pandya (1/16 in 2 overs) after a whirlwind start in the first two overs, who quickly removed Minod Bhanuka.

Chahal bowled the delivery of the match, a flighted delivery that fooled Dhananjaya de Silva (9) into playing inside the line and being castled. Avishka Fernando (26) paid the price for the slowness of the track as he attempted to pull Bhuvneshwar Kumar.

However, debutant Charith Asalanka (44 off 26 balls) had other plans as he launched into opposition rookie Chakravarthy (1/28 in 4 overs), smoking him for two sixes into cow corner while his partner Ashen Bandara (9 off 19 balls) struggled.

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Bandara's misery was ended by Hardik Pandya's slow off-break (1/17 in 2 overs), but Asalanka kept Sri Lanka in the game with some big hits before being dismissed by Chahar. Earlier, Suryakumar continued his hot streak, and he was helped along by skipper Shikhar Dhawan (46 off 38 balls) and Ishan Kishan (20 not out off 14 balls) at the back end.

Dhawan added 62 with Surya in eight overs to provide a solid platform, but the latter's dismissal cost India at least 20 runs.

Looking at the partnership, it was clear that the junior partner was batting more confidently, having already secured his place in the T20 World Cup team, whereas the skipper is still fighting what appears to be a losing battle to jostle inside that jam-packed top-order in the main squad.

Despite four more boundaries and a six over deep midwicket off Akila Dananjaya, the innings lacked punch. Surya's five fours and a six aided Kishan and Hardik in launching the final assault.

Prithvi Shaw had a forgettable T20 International debut at the start, as Dushmantha Chammera's (2/24 in 4 overs) outswinger found the edge of his bat off the first delivery of the match.

Sanju Samson (27 off 20 balls) hit his customary six while batting like a millionaire before being caught with a googly by Wanindu Hasaranga (2/28 in 4 overs).

Surya was his usual free-flowing self, hitting whiplash on-drives, cover drives, and ramp shots that are a sight to behold both against pacers and spinners.

Surya's ability to pick all those back-of-the-hand slower deliveries from seamers Isuru Udana and Chamika Karunaratne was thrilling.

Udana was out with a traditional sweep shot for a boundary, while Karunaratne was slog swept for a six.

When Hasaranga came in for his final over, he went inside-out to loft him for a straight six to complete his fifty, but the leg-spinner had the last laugh because he wasn't afraid to fly again, and the inside-out chip shot didn't require wings to soar over the ropes.

His dismissal did deprive India of a chance to score 175 or more runs.


The News Talkie Bureau



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