India clinch series on the back of Rohit’s joint-fastest T20I century

India innings (toss: Sri Lanka, who chose to bowl first)
Batsman Dismissal Runs scored 4s 6s Strike rate
R Sharma caught Dananjaya, bowled Chameera 118 (43) 12 10 274.41
L Rahul caught Dickwella, bowled Pradeep 89 (49) 5 8 181.63
MS Dhoni bowled T Perera 28 (21) 2 2 133.33
H Pandya caught Sadeera, bowled Pradeep 10 (3) 1 1 333.33
S Iyer lbw T Perera 0 (1) 0 0 0.00
M Pandey not out 1 (1) 0 0 100.00
D Karthik not out 5 (2) 1 0 250.00
Batsmen who didn’t bat: J Bumrah, K Yadav, J Unadkat, Y Chahal
Extras: 9 (6 wides, 3 leg byes)
India’s total: 260/5 in 20 overs, at 13.00 runs per over
Fall of wickets: 165/1 (R Sharma, 12.4), 243/2 (L Rahul, 18.3), 253/3 (H Pandya, 18.6), 254/4 (S Iyer, 19.2), 255/5 (MS Dhoni, 19.4)
Sri Lanka bowling
Bowlers Overs Dot balls Runs Wickets  Economy
A Mathews 2.2 7 16 0 6.86
D Chameera 4 11 45 1 11.25
N Pradeep 4 5 61 2 15.25
A Dananjaya 3.4 7 49 0 13.36
T Perera 4 7 49 2 12.25
C de Silva 1 1 16 0 16.00
A Gunaratne 1 1 21 0 21.00
Sri Lanka innings (target: 261 runs in 20 overs, at 13.05 runs per over)
Batsman Dismissal Runs scored 4s 6s Strike rate
N Dickwella caught Pandya, bowled Unadkat 25 (19) 2 1 131.57
U Tharanga caught and bowled Chahal 47 (29) 3 2 162.06
K Perera caught Pandey, bowled Kuldeep 77 (37) 4 7 208.10
T Perera caught Pandya, bowled Kuldeep 0 (1) 0 0 0.00
A Gunaratne stumped Dhoni, bowled Kuldeep 0 (1) 0 0 0.00
S Samarawickrama stumped Dhoni, bowled Chahal 5 (2) 1 0 250.00
C de Silva bowled Chahal 1 (2) 0 0 50.00
A Dananjaya caught Pandey, bowled Chahal 5 (3) 1 0 166.66
D Chameera bowled Pandya 3 (5) 0 0 60.00
N Pradeep not out 0 (5) 0 0 0.00
Batsman who didn’t bat: A Mathews (injury)
Extras: 9 (7 wides, 2 leg byes)
SL’s total: 172/9 in 17.2 overs, at 9.92 runs per over
Fall of wickets: 36/1 (N Dickwella, 4.3), 145/2 (U Tharanga, 13.2), 155/3 (T Perera, 14.1), 156/4 (K Perera, 14.2), 161/5 (A Gunaratne, 14.5), 162/6 (C de Silva, 15.1), 164/7 (S Samarawickrama, 15.2), 170/8 (A Dananjaya, 15.5), 172/9 (D Chameera, 17.2)
India bowling
Bowlers Overs Dot balls Runs given Wickets Economy
J Unadkat 3 5 22 1 7.33
J Bumrah 3 7 21 0 7.00
K Yadav 4 5 52 3 13.00
H Pandya 3.2 6 23 1 6.90
Y Chahal 4 8 52 4 13.00

Man of the match:

Rohit Sharma, for his 43-ball 118.

Top scorer in the 2nd T20:

Rohit Sharma [118 (43), 12×4 and 10×6, strike rate 274.41]

Where was the 2nd T20 won and lost?

India’s better bowling and catching won them an exciting Twenty20 International match played at one of the smaller grounds in the world by 88 runs. The bowlers from both the teams underwent severe punishment, but the Indian bowling attack benefitted from the huge score (260/5 in 20 overs) the batsmen had put and went about assuring India of a win. The asking rate from the get-go was 13.05 runs per over and though Sri Lanka had a couple of good partnerships and scored at almost 10 runs per over, they just didn’t have enough firepower in their arsenal to eclipse India’s mammoth total batting first.

In hindsight, we may conclude that this Indian side are too strong for Sri Lanka and, no matter what, will win nine out of ten matches played between these two teams on current form. But the visitors made life difficult for themselves first by asking India to bat after winning the toss and then by bowling ordinarily.

Rohit Sharma was in ominous touch and threatened to register the first double hundred in Twenty20 International cricket. Rohit’s belligerent striking and an innate ability to hit sixes off almost all kinds of deliveries came to the fore once more and the Holkar Stadium witnessed sixes galore. Rohit’s six-hitting ability was the reason 200 came into the picture despite this being just a 20-over match.

He was also in the sort of mood that he shaped to hit almost every delivery out of the park and almost managed it, hitting 10 sixes and 12 fours and ending up with a simply mind-boggling 118 runs off 43 balls (an astonishing strike rate of 274.41). He got to his second T20I hundred off just 35 balls too, matching David Miller’s record for the fastest T20I century. Rohit was in dreamland in terms of how well he was hitting the ball, but he also was given a second life by Sadeera Samarawickrama (who put down a difficult chance at the long-on boundary) when on 79.

Lokesh Rahul had batted extremely well too and Rohit’s supreme hitting overshadowed the class and flamboyance of Rahul. After getting off to a quick start himself, Rahul played second fiddle and focussed on putting Rohit on strike whenever he had the strike. In doing so, he lost a bit of rhythm but ended up with another T20I half-century, making 89 runs off 49 balls, his innings punctuated by five fours and eight sixes.

Rohit and Rahul put together India’s highest T20I partnership for any wicket (165 runs), Dushmantha Chameera picking Rohit’s wicket in the 13th over (12.4) and giving Sri Lanka a huge sigh of relief. If Rohit had stayed any longer in the middle, India probably will have nudged 300 and comfortably overhauled the record team total in T20I cricket (which currently is 263 by Australia against Sri Lanka).

Chasing 261 was very much out of the question, but Sri Lanka, through Upul Tharanga and Kusal Perera, looked like they might get close to India. India’s wrist-spinners (Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal) took a majority of the punishment among the Indian bowlers and Kusal, in particular, struck the ball cleanly and batted more in line with what you expect of him. He picked the line of the deliveries superbly and his bat swing was so good that he, like Rohit, succeeded in sending the ball sailing into the stands. Because of him, Sri Lanka managed to score more than 10 runs an over (with two sixes or as many fours coming off every over almost) easily during the middle phase. Tharanga weighed in with a few boundaries of his own, but he played the Rahul role in the Sri Lankan innings.

Kuldeep and Chahal were hit for 29 and 30 runs, respectively, off their first two overs, but Rohit persisted with them and did not opt for a part-timer. And the two spinners repaid their captain’s faith by coming back strongly and cut-shorting Sri Lanka’s march towards 200. After reaching 142/1 at the end of 13 overs, the now-familiar Sri Lankan batting collapse ensued and they lost 8/30 to finish at 172/9 in 17.2 overs, failing to bat out their 20 overs for the second match running. Angelo Mathews, who pulled his hamstring while bowling his third over, didn’t come out to bat. Kusal made 77 runs off 37 balls and helped Sri Lanka reduce the margin of defeat.

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