India crushes Sri Lanka in 1st T20
CUTTACK, India (AP) India swept to its biggest victory in Twenty20 cricket on Wednesday with a 93-run win over Sri Lanka at the start of their three-match series.
Led by Lokesh Rahul’s 61 off 48 balls, India scored a solid 180-3 and then followed up with a devastating spin attack. Sri Lanka was dismissed for just 87 runs in 16 overs after Yuzvendra Chahal (4-23) and Kuldeep Yadav (2-18) combined to wreak havoc with the touring batsmen.
India’s previous highest winning margin was 90 runs, against England in the World T20 in 2012.
Put into bat, India lost Rohit Sharma (17) early. But Rahul scored freely and put on 63 runs with Shreyas Iyer (24) for the second wicket, with India crossing the 100 mark in the 13th over.
Rahul and Iyer were dismissed in quick succession as they tried to step up the run rate.
MS Dhoni (39) and Manish Pandey (32) then put on 68 for the unbeaten fourth wicket.
”We did not know what a good score on that wicket would be. Getting to 180 was a great effort by the batting unit. Chahal and Yadav have been wicket-taking options for us of late, and they have delivered for us,” said Rohit Sharma, India’s stand-in skipper.
Sri Lanka made a dismal start as Jaidev Unadkat dismissed Niroshan Dickwella for 13 on his international return in the second over.
Upul Tharanga managed to reach 23 before being caught behind off Chahal in the fifth over, triggering a batting collapse as India’s leg spinners overcame the heavy dew.
Chahal dismissed Angelo Mathews (1) and Asela Gunaratane (4) to stun the visitors’ middle order.
”I got into good rhythm with Tharanga’s wicket. The wicket was slow but it had good, helpful bounce. I am used to bowling with wet ball so dew was not an issue,” Chaha said.
Yadav chipped in with the wickets of Kusal Perera (19) and Dasun Shanaka (1) as the visitors lost their last seven wickets for just 32 runs.
”You can chase 180 if you get a good start. But I am really disappointed with our batting line-up. This group of players has to find a way to cope with the Indian spinners in the next match,” Sri Lankan skipper Thisara Perera said.
The second match of the series will be played at Indore on Friday.