One of the most exciting days for cricket supporters where almost 600 runs were scored at R.Premdasa stadium, but in the end the team who kept their nerves till the end came out as winner. The ghost of batting under the R Premadasa lights was almost buried tonight but thanks to Harbhajan Singh brilliant spell with the ball which kept Sri Lankans away from creating history.
The win break the long jinx for India against Sri Lanka, whose last win was way back in 2000 where more than two teams were involved. In the end 46 runs margin doesn’t suggest the actual drama taken place during Sri Lankan’s inning. India dropped too many catches, missed too many run out opportunities and given so many runs in overthrows.
Indian fast bowlers get too much hammering from the Sri Lankan batsman’s. But it was Indian spinners who checked the scoring rates and pull back the game in India’s favor. Harbhajan Singh, Suresh Raina and Yuvraj Singh bowled 24 overs between them and conceded just 106 runs and picked up 7 wickets.
In the rest 23 overs of Sri Lankan innings, Indian fast bowler conceded 167 runs and picked up three wickets in between them. Ishant Sharma was worst of lot as he got lots of beating by T.Dilshan (42 runs of 29 balls).
Earlier Sachin Tendulkar (138 runs of 133 balls) scored his 86th international and 44th one day international century to guide India to mammoth total of 319/5 in their 50 overs. He was well supported by Indian wall Rahul Dravid (39 runs of 56 balls), Indian Captain M.S.Dhoni (56 runs of 62 balls) and then Yuvraj Singh (56 runs of 41 balls) played blistering knock at the end.
For his effort Sachin Tendulkar awarded his 59th Man of the Match and 14th Man of the Series award of his career which is a world record by him.
T.Dilshan (42 runs of 29 balls) and S.Jayasurya (36 runs of 29 balls) gave perfect start for Sri Lanka by putting 64 runs of just 47 balls before Harbhajan Singh struck for India in his very first over by bowling Dilshan out for 42 runs. Then in his very next over he removed Jayawardne to bring India right back into the game.
But the loss of wickets at regular intervals didn’t helped Sri Lanka course. However the partnership between Kandamby (66 runs of 94 balls) and Kapugedara (25 runs of 42 balls) of 70 runs of 84 balls kept Sri Lanka in hunt till 43rd over but wickets at the right time of Kapugedara and Kandamby seal the game for India.
Sachin Tendulkar was declared Player of the Match for his superb knock of 138 runs of just 133 balls.
Sachin Tendulkar was also declared Player of the Series for scoring 212 runs with an average of 70.67 in the Compaq Cup series.
Harbhajan Singh was adjudged Stylish Player of the Day after picking up 5/56 to restrict Sri Lanka to 273 in the chase of 320 runs.
Yuvraj Singh was awarded $1000 for scoring fastest 50 of the day. He scored 50 runs of just 39 balls.