All-round SL surge to 161 run win
Riding on a brilliant display from centurions Upul Tharanga and Mahela Jayawardene, Sri Lanka handed India a 161 run defeat in the third ODI of the Tri-Nation series at Kingston on Tuesday.
Virat Kohli won the toss and sent SL in, hoping that his bowlers would make good use of the bowling friendly conditions early on. But the early strikes did not come in the absence of Bhuvneshwar Kumar who was rested and replaced by Shami Ahmed.
The Sri Lankan batting order showed resilience and discipline putting on a massive opening partnership of 213. India’s bowlers lacked discipline, offering freebies to the already set batsmen and the fielding didn't help either, dropping Mahela Jayawardene (104) on 25 and Upul Tharanga (174*) on 91. Under pressure, they fell apart, conceding 180 runs from the last 16 overs as Sri Lanka posted a massive target of 348/1.
With a massive target to chase, the team needed a quick start but that did not come, India reaching a measly 28/1 at the end of 10 overs. Murali Vijay who came in for MS Dhoni made a cautious 30 before being cleaned up by a superb yorker from Lasith Malinga.
Buoyed by the big total and India’s evident discomfort, SL's bowlers produced good deliveries and were backed by enthusiastic fielding to silence India's big guns: Shikhar Dhawan (24), Virat Kohli (2), Rohit Sharma (5) and Suresh Raina (33).
Rangana Herath lead the defence with 3/37, strengthening SL's hold with regular wickets, the only notable scorer for the Indian team being Ravindra Jadeja who made 49*.
India were finally bowled out for 187 in 44.5 overs to hand Sri Lanka a bonus point and a 161 run win, India’s biggest loss by margin of runs in ODIs.
A smarting India will regroup to play West Indies in the next game of the series at Port of Spain on Friday.