The Indian Cricket Team has won the first Test of the 3-match series against Sri Lanka by 304 runs on the fourth day itself. Virat Kohli and Co. set a huge target of 550 runs for the Lankan hosts which they needed to chase in two days. But the Indian bowlers didn’t allow the game to be stretched till the 5th day and wrapped up the inning on July 29th itself. With this victory, India leads the series by 1-0 with 2 more games remaining.
Earlier today, skipper Virat Kohli and Ajinkya Rahane started the day with the score – 189/3 where Kohli was on 76 while Rahane was yet to bat. Team India declared their second inning in the first session of day 3 after putting a total of 240 runs on the board and taking a lead of 549 runs. Virat Kohli played a phenomenal inning and scored his 17th Test century. He ended up scoring 103 runs off 136 which included 5 fours and 1 sixes.
The Lankan opening pair of Dimuth Karunaratne and Upul Tharanga came to chase down the target and had a good start. However, they failed to make a healthy partnership as Tharanga was dismissed in the third over the innings. After 3 more over, Dhanushka Gunathilaka went back to the pavilion after scoring a mere 2 runs off 8 balls.
Kusal Mendis came into bat at number 4 and supported Karunaratne for a long interval of time. Both of them added 79 for the 3rd wicket before Mendis’ was out for 36. Ravindra Jadeja took his wicket and provided the much-needed break through by breaking this brewing partnership. Angelo Mathews, the next batsman in, didn’t stand long at the crease and was out after scoring only 2 runs.
After getting reduced to 116/4, the Lankan side needed another long and strong partnership at that moment. Wicket Keeper Niroshan Dickwella and Karunarathne steadied the inning to reach 192/4 at tea. Karunaratne (85 not out), Niroshan Dickwella (48 not out) went undefeated for tea after adding 76 runs for the fifth wicket at the Galle International Stadium here.
The third session brought the dooms day for the Lankans as they failed to take the match to the last day and lost the game. Dickwella’s wicket in the 62nd over tilted the game towards the Indians. He was playing on 67 when the ball delivered by Ashwin kissed his bat and landed safely in Wriddhiman’s gloves. The 100 run partnership built between Karunarathne and Dickwella was ended and the Indians got closer to victory.
In the 74th over, Karunarathne was bowled by Ashwin while he was on 97. Among the tail enders, Dilruwan Perera managed to score 21 runs off 50 balls while Nuwan Pradeep was gone for a duck. Skipper Rangana Herath didn’t come to bat and India won the game by 304 runs.
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