It was showdown of a strong muscle flexing for India against Sri Lanka winning the first ODI at Dambulla. India won the match by nine wickets with more than 21 overs to spare. India's chase was a one-man game with a crucial support of the captain. While, Sri Lanka’s inning was headstrong with the top line-up, which collapsed after half the inning was bowled. Sri Lanka scored 216 as a target for India. Chasing the score, Shikhar Dhawan knocked his fastest century remaining unbeaten in the inning. India lost only a single wicket in the match, reaching the target in 28.5 overs.
The way Sri Lanka set off their strike off could have made the team reach the 300-mark. All was well for the team until they lost the partnership between Niroshan Dickwella and Upul Tharanga. Sri Lanka’s strike bolstered to 139 for 1, but, once the wobble started, it did not stop until the line-up exhausted. Sri Lanka lost the next nine wickets for 77 runs, which means, losing a wicket for less than 8 runs. Dickwella scored 64 runs followed by 36 from Kusal Mendis and 35 from Gunathilaka. Angelo Mathews added an unbeaten 36, as the only anchor in the batting line. Kedar Jadhav started the attack taking down Dickwella and skipper Upul Tharanga. The best attack was from Axar Patel, picking up 3 wickets for 34 runs. Jasprit Bumrah and Yuzvendra Chahal toppled two wickets each.
India’s campaign started with a slog. It was Rohit Sharma’s run out, playing his first match as the vice -captain. It did not go well when the striker left his feet on air even if under the crease. But it was only success for Sri Lanka in the inning, because the next partnership-stand between Shikhar Dhawan and Virat Kohli took the inning straight to the winning mark. Dhawan hammered 23 boundaries, which was more than Sri Lanka’s combined total of 20 in the previous inning. He nicked the century in 71 balls. Meanwhile, Virat Kohli silently plundered 82 as his contribution to the hefty win.
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