Coming into the third league match of Asia Cup 2016, India was clearly the favorites looking at the current form and the statistics of both the teams. India has lost only 1 T20 out of 8 against Sri Lanka and having an unbeaten run of 5 matches in a row. Toss was in favor of Mahi and as predicted he choose to trust his bowlers once again in the series. Dhawan and Rohit both were fit for the game, and from SL Malinga could not make it.
Headed by veteran Nehra Indian fast bowlers along with young Bumhah and Pandya responded to the captain’s call as each one of them struck in the first 7 overs. Pandya took the important scalp of Dilshan (18). Captain Mathews tried to stable the innings but he also fell to Pandya after scoring 18. Siriwardana, Kapugedara and Parera tried their best to improve the score but wickets at regular interval by Indian bowlers restricted SL to 138/9. Better than PAK and BANG but India has a strong line up.
Chasing this Dhawan failed again in the series and good looking Rohit (15) fell to Kulasekara in the 4th over. Inform Kohli and Raina then steadied the ship with a 61 run partnership as Raina (25) fell in the 12th over. In came Yuvi and this is most interesting part of the night. He hammered 3 sixes and 3 fours in his 35 runs camion and took the game away from SL. India lost next man Pandya also cheaply but Kohli was there throughout to seal in India’s place in the finals with an excellent half century designed with some excellent boundaries. India won by 5 wickets with 4 balls left.
The result was almost predictable. The takeaway was Yuvi’s innings, keeping in mind that in the same venue 23 months back his innings was judged to cost India the T20 WC against SL in the finals. We can easily assume that he would be the happiest person in the Indian dressing room today along with all his fans across the world.
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