Charged with the impressive four-wicket haul by Ravichandran Ashwin, India’s devastating opener Shikhar Dhawan struck a powerful knock of 46 runs to help India beat Sri Lanka by 9 wickets. While chasing a small target of 83 runs, India reached the target in 13.5 overs to win Paytm T20 series 2-1 at Visakhapatnam, on Sunday.
Dhawan made 46 runs off 46 balls with a strike rate of 100 while partner Ajinkya Rahane scored unbeaten 22 runs to support his impressive innings.
Getting off to a good start, India lost their first wicket in 5.2 overs, as Rohit Sharma departed for 13 runs off 13 balls. Rohit failed to get bat to Chameera’s full-length delivery and was trapped LBW.
Earlier in the first innings, Ashwin heroics folded the Sri Lankan batting line-up for a poor total of 82 runs. This total also marked their lowest ever in a T20 match. Mystical off-spinner Ashwin claimed 4 wickets for 8 runs, surpassing his own previous best (11/4). Indian spinners shone the maximum at the VDCA Cricket Stadium, as Suresh Raina (6/2) and Ravindra Jadeja (11/1) dominated throughout the match with their turn missiles. Yuvraj Singh was a bit expensive when came to bowl as he conceded two consecutive sixes by Dasun Shanaka in his single over.
While facing the Indian assault, Shanaka scored the maximum 19 runs in the Sri Lankan innings. Apart from him, Thisara Perera (12) was the only two-digit scorer as Dhoni & company kept their attack high on the Lankans to clinch the series.
Powering the seam department, Ashish Nehra (17/1) and Jasprit Bumrah (10/1) bowled Milinda Siriwardana (4) and Dilhara Fernando (1), respectively.
Previously on this ground, Virat Kohli, Mahendra Singh Dhoni (148 against Pakistan) and Yuvraj Singh proved their heroics in the past. Kohli has struck two hundreds and one 99. Also, Dhoni’s 148 against Pakistan and Yuvraj’s 95 against Sri Lanka were also witnessed in this ground at Visakhapatnam. Including this, India have won five games out of six on this ground.
Ashwin named as both Man of the Match and Man of the Series in the post-match ceremony. “With a couple of variations, I have a good arm ball and a good carrom ball. I am bowling well and I have been challenging the batters well,” Ashwin said after the victory.
The winning captain Dhoni concluded by saying “The conditions have been good and it’s been great to exploit those conditions. In these conditions, the part-timers come into play.”