India brought in two changes for the third and final ODI at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai as Washington Sundar becomes the youngest Indian cricketer to debut for India in T20I, while Jasprit Bumrah made way for the young Mohammad Siraj. Sri Lankan batsmen were out of place as Rohit Sharma put them to bat first after winning the toss. Sri Lanka could manage only 135 in their quota of 20 overs which is also the lowest ever T20I total at this ground after a brilliant bowling display from the Indian bowlers. India reached the score with four balls to spare. The Indian batsmen handled pressure with ease.
Indian bowlers were all over the Lankan bowler as the visitors were reduced to 18 for three within the first three overs. Sadeera Samarawickrama and Asela Gunaratne then stitched a 38 run partnership before Hardik Pandya removed Samarawickrama. Lower-order batsman Dasun Shanaka hammered some balls in the end overs as he smashed 18 runs in the last over off Mohammad Siraj to take his teams total to 135. Jaydev Unadkat and Hardik Pandya was the pick of the bowlers registering two wickets each behind their name.
India started off slow unlike other matches as the target was well within reach; however, they lost both the openers at the score of 39 runs. However, Manish Pandey and Shreyas Iyer took control of the match scoring runs at ease but got run out unfortunately at the score of 81 runs. India lost quick wickets and was striving at 108 for five before MS Dhoni, and Dinesh Karthik took the host home. Sri Lanka bowlers looked good, but the score was too small to defend in a flat deck that Wankhede presented.
The left-armer Unadkat showed a hint of form right from the first match as he made a comeback to India squad after a long time. Given an opportunity to lead the bowling pack, Unadkat showed great maturity and responsibility as he removed both the openers including Upul Tharanga, who was in red hot form. Unadkat dismissed another Sri Lankan opener Niroshan Dickwella for the third time in a row in this series. Unadkat bowled at an economy of 4.88 and had picked up four wickets in this series and was adjudged both the man of the match and the man of the series.
Here is what Unadkat said in the post-match presentation ceremony:
“Things went really well for me. I had some plans for myself. Had done my preparations before the series. To achieve results like this is outstanding. Been a fruitful career. Been through the domestic circuit, played a lot of games there. Helped me mature as a player. I was always eager to make this comeback. Made a comeback in 2013, wasn’t that great. It was important for me in this series to get the confidence. The most important phase of any player’s career is domestic circuit. To come out well gives you the confidence. Just wanted to give my best whenever I got the chance. IPL cricket has really helped to get the confidence when you come to the international arena.”