As expectedly, India given it back in a style at Colombo as they thrashed the hosts, Sri Lankans with a margin of 6 wickets and 9 balls remaining. The stunning comeback from Indian bowling attack in the first half and later, the calm and composed innings by Manish Pandey and Dinesh Karthik saw India leading the points table pretty comfortably.
Earlier, in the match, rain has been the first guest which took away one over from each innings. After the intervention, India won the toss and choose to bowl first in order to get the target on the board. But, Sri Lankan batsmen have other ideas in the mind as they thrashed Indian bowlers superbly before Raina taking a stunner to send back Gunathilaka back in the hut.
Shardul Thakur has been the destroyer in the chief for India who bagged 4 wickets to his name while Washington Sundar picked 2 wickets to his name. Coming to Sri Lanka, Akila Dananjaya is the only bowler who impressed the pundits with his finest spell of 2 wickets while Pradeep scalped apiece.
I had to step up in that role when senior bowlers are rested: Shardul Thakur
Speaking of his performance and the role of him in the team, Shardul Thakur quoted that ”I have told one thing before: I love challenges. I am taking it as a challenge. If other senior bowlers are missing from the team, then I have to step up. I have done this previously for other teams that I have played for. I have come in place of Zaheer Khan, Dhawal Kulkarni and Ajit Agarkar while playing for Mumbai (in Ranji Trophy). I had to step up in that role. When senior bowlers are rested, I have to step up and fill that role to lead the pace attack.”
“The way they (Lanka) were going, they would have scored at least 165 to 170 but we got Upul (Tharanga) out when he was coming hard at us. Thisara then came in and hit a few boundaries. So I think those crucial 2-3 wickets kept coming and we were probably able to cut down the total by 15-20 runs,” Thakur said as per the inputs by PTI.
First game was an eye-opener:
No one would have expected that India will lose in such a way against Sri Lanka in the tournament opening game as India always been dominant against Islanders irrespective of the format. However, the collective effort from Sri Lankan players did the trick for them but it is something which made India concentrate more on their game and they have yielded the results very quickly.
“In T20 cricket, you need to be ready for surprises. The first game was a surprise and an eye opener for us. I was hit for 27 runs and also some overs went for above 15 runs. I feel the game against Bangladesh and in this game, we came back strongly and executed our plans well,” he concluded.