Sri Lanka come from behind to stun India
Sri Lanka have pulled off an incredible comeback win against India at Galle in the first Test of the two teams’ three-match series, winning by 63 runs.
The visitors were set 176 to win, but were bowled out in 49.5 overs for just 112 by the Sri Lankan spinners Rangana Herath and Tharindu Kaushal. Top scorer for the Indians was Ajinkya Rahane with a paltry 36.
But India’s last innings collapse only tells a small part of the story of this amazing game.
By the end of the first day, Sri Lanka’s hopes of winning had apparently already been extinguished - they had been shot out for just 183 in 49.4 overs, and then India had raced to 128 for 2.
At the end of day two, the situation looked were even worse for Sri Lanka as India were bowled out for 375, a lead of 192. Both Shikhar Dhawan and captain Virat Kohli scored hundreds, and wicketkeeper Wriddhiman Saha chipped in with 60. Sri Lanka then lost both openers before the close.
But if the Indians thought they were well on their way to winning the match and going one up in the series, they were very much mistaken.
On day three, enter Sri Lankan wicketkeeper Dinesh Chandimal. Coming in when Kumar Sangakkara was dismissed with the score at 92 for 4, and with the Sri Lankans still 100 behind, he added 125 with Lahiru Thirimanne for the sixth wicket, and 82 with Jehan Mubarak for the seventh, to give his side a slender lead.
However, the key partnership was surely for the ninth wicket, as Chandimal added 41 with Kaushal, of which Kaushal scored just seven. Chandimal eventually finished with a remarkable 162 not out, scored off just 169 balls with 19 fours and four sixes.
And then it was over to Herath and Kaushal. Herath, in particular, was impressive, taking 7 for 48, and, in doing so, overtaking Bishan Bedi as the third most successful left arm spinner in the history of Test cricket.