India fought back in the second ODI against Sri Lanka at Mohali after suffering a humiliating defeat by seven wickets in first ODI. The 18-year-old all-rounder from Tamil Nadu, Washington Sundar made his debut for the men in blues as left-arm leg-spinner Rohit Sharma dropped Kuldeep Yadav.
Sri Lanka opted to ball first after winning the toss; however, the India openers laid a strong foundation to post a mammoth total unlike the first match to push the Sri Lankan bowlers on the back foot. In reply, the Sri Lankan batsmen lost wickets at regular intervals as they couldn’t match with the required run rate and fell short by 141 runs.
The left-hand, right-hand combination of Shikhar Dhawan and Rohit Sharma got India off to a flier as the posted 115 runs for the first wickets in just 20 overs before Dhawan (68) was caught by Lahiru Thirimanne off Sachith Pathirana. Rohit, who was playing the waiting game started to break the shackles as he muscled the Sri Lankan bowlers out of the park. On the other hand, the young cricketer from Mumbai Shreyas Iyer, who made his debut in the last match also looked comfortable in front of Sri Lankan bowlers as he reached his first international fifty in no time.
The two cricketers from Mumbai stitched a 213-run partnership for the second wicket before Iyer (88) got out caught as the Sri Lankan bowlers looked helpless as runs started coming in easily. The stand-in captain Rohit Sharma reached his third ODI double hundred with the help of 13 boundaries and 12 over boundaries as he remained unbeaten on 208 runs. The men in blues posted a massive total of 392 runs giving enough runs for the bowlers to bowl at.
In reply, Sri Lanka lost wickets at regular intervals trying to up the scoring-rate as the Indian bowlers were right on the mark. Sri Lanka lost their first wicket in from Upul Tharanga as Hardik Pandya removed him cheaply at the score of seven runs. The debutant Washington Sundar claimed his first international wicket as he cleaned up Lahiru Thirimanne as he misses the line completely while playing the reverse sweep.
The experienced Angelo Mathews played a gem of an innings in the middle-order; however, he ran out of partners at the other end as Indian bowlers picked wickets consistently. Asela Gunratne (34) and Niroshan Dickwella (22) tried to score some runs in the middle; however, they were outdone by the Indian bowlers. Yuzvendra Chahal was the pick of the bowlers as he picked up three important wickets in his quota of 10 overs.
Hardik Pandya was economical as he gave away only 39 runs in his quota of 10 overs; however, his name was not on the wicket-takers list. Bhuvneshwar .Kumar also bowled some tight overs as he picked up the wicket of Sachith Pathirana. Angelo Matthews tried his level best as he remained unbeaten on 111 runs as Sri Lanka fell short by 141 runs. Shreyas Iyer bowled some leg-spin in the last over giving away only two runs, as India level the three-match series 1-1.
India played some spirited cricket to level the series at 1-1 with the last match to be played at Visakhapatnam on 17th December, which will be an intriguing contest as India have now found their game back under the stand-in skipper Rohit Sharma.
Brief Score: India 392/4 ( Rohit 208*, Iyer 88) Perera 3/80 beat Sri Lanka 251/8 ( Matthews 111* Gunaratne 34) Chahal 3/60 by 141 runs