5 runs to win with Virendra Sehwag unbeaten on 99, Sri Lankan captain (and wicket keeper) Kumar Sangakkara gave another hint of what a ruthless leader he is as he left a bye for four and then his bowler = Suraj Randiv, bowled the biggest no ball he's ever sent down in his career (obviously intertionally). Sehwag jumped out of the crease to hit a six and raised his bat thinking he had reached his 13 ODI century but soon realised it was a no ball and match had finished before he played his stroke. Sehwag called Sri Lankan move to deny him a century as fair, saying no team wants a batsman to score a century against them and Lankans were no different..
An unethical end it was to a low scoring match 3 of this Micromax cup triseries 2010 but a win for India nevertheless, which now keeps them in hunt for a spot in final after losing first game to New Zealand by 200 runs. How it unfolded? lets start with the toss which Indian captain lost for the 10th time straight.
Praveen Kumar castled Upul Tharanga first up, recording third occassion when he took a wicket off first ball of the match, and then maintained his accuracy for 5 more overs straight. From other end, left armer Ashish Nehra (who was declared fit from his gluteus muscle problems) bounced Sangakkara into a false pull shot to reduce home team to 2 wkts for 14 before Pakistan umpire Asad Rauf made it 3 wkts for 23 by giving a tough leg before decision against Mahela Jayawardene. Ball may have missed stumps as it had hit the right handed batsman above knee roll but since we still don't have umpire decision review system in one day matches, Jayawardene walked off, leaving his team in big trouble.
Thilan Samaraweera, known for his solidarity, concentrated on singles down the leg side once too often to be caught at short mid-wicket off Ishant Sharma, recuding his team to 44 for 4 wkts. Tillakaratne Dilshan had watched 4 of his mates depart so he carved his natural attacking instincts for his 45 off 62 balls but he lost patience as Indian captain MS Dhoni kept fielders inside the 30 yard circle and perished trying to slog sweep left arm spinner Pragyan Ojha against the spin.
Sri Lanka 82 for 5 wkts from 21.4 overs when we had a 20 minutes rain break.
Angelo Mathews and Chamara Kapugedera were claimed by Ravindra Jadeja after weather cleared up, leaving home team tottering at 103 for 7 wickets at the 31.3 over mark but tailenders Nuwan Kulasekara and Suraj Randiv added crucial 39 to give some respectibility to their score. Randiv then managed 16 with Lasith Malinga and was last man out after 22 run stand with Dilhara Fernando, giving himself something to bowl at.
Indian chase lost opener Dinesh Karthik cheaply, for 10 and then two young batters = Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma, were out for duck. Indian 50 came from 16.1 overs for the loss of 3 wickets, the exact of what Sri Lankans had done few hours earlier and it was anybody's match at this juncture.
Virendra Sehwag, without a half century in his last 11 oneday innings, took his time to get set but flourished during his half ton stand with Suresh Raina which came off just 50 balls, redirecting Indians towards victory banks. MS Dhoni was unbeaten with Sehwag as Indians sealed up the game inside 35 overs, reserving bonus points.
The scoreSri Lanka 170 allout in 46.1 overs
T Dilshan 45, S Randiv 43, P Ojha 3/36
India 171/4 in 34.3 ovs (won with bonus)
V Sehwag 99*(100b), S Raina 21, MS Dhoni 23.
Full scorecard : Ind v SL, match 3, 16 Aug 2010.
Suresh Rainaplayed his 100th ODI today, becoming 29th Indian player to represent India in century of oneday matches. Interestingly, Raina made his debut at the same venue against same team in 2005 (and was out for a first ball duck, off a certain Muthiah Muralitharan).