Dhananjaya de Silva, Sri Lanka’s vice-captain, held his nerve on a tricky pitch by helping his side chase 133 in the second T20I to level the three-match series. Dhananjaya de Silva missed out on playing significant knocks in the ODIs as a senior batsman. But the right-handed batsman, having played a controlled knock, wanted to bat till the end.
Even as India entered the match at least two batters shot, Shikhar Dhawan and rookie batsman Ruturaj Gaikwad stitched a 49-run stand for India. Dasun Shanaka struck to remove the latter, followed by the spinners squeezing the visitors’ batting unit. Wanindu Hasaranga and Akila Dananjaya bowled economically and made crucial strikes in the middle overs and towards death. Finally, India left defending 133 to seal the series.
Sri Lanka started their run-chase no better as India’s spin-trio kept the pressure on by controlling the run-flow and chipping away. But Dhananjaya de Silva kept the batting unit together and stitched a breezy and handy 28-run stand with Wanindu Hasaranga. Chamika Karunaratne’s six in the second last over was arguably the turning point as it released the pressure. De Silva finished with an unbeaten 40 off 34 balls, eking out the eight runs required off the final over off debutant Chetan Sakariya.
When you play against India, it’s very tough: Dhananjaya de Silva
Dhananjaya de Silva feels satisfied to contribute to the win intended to stay till the end. The 29-year old, who hit only one six and four each, stated playing India is arguably challenging.
“I am very happy to contribute. In my mind, I wanted to bat till the 20th over. I thought this was my opportunity. When you play against India, it’s very tough,” De Silva told in the post-match presentation.