The shambolic performance in Pune was compensated with a complete annihilation of the visitors today, as India thumped Sri Lanka by 69 runs in the 2nd T20I of the three-match series played at the Jharkhand Cricket Association Stadium, Ranchi.
Sri Lankan captain Dinesh Chandimal asked the Indians to bat first after winning the toss, a move that backfired miserably, as Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, Suresh Raina and Hardik Pandya powered India to a more than competitive 196/6.
This was despite Thisara Perera’s hat-trick of wickets in the 19th over. The bowlers emulated the batsmen, as Ashish Nehra and Ravichandran Ashwin dismantled the top order, followed by Ravindra Jadeja and Jasprit Bumrah who cleaned up the middle order and the tail respectively.
The three-match series is now tied at 1-1 with the decider to be played in Visakhapatnam on February 14. Here is how the players fared.
Shikhar Dhawan: 9/10
Not only did Shikhar Dhawan score his maiden T20I fifty, he did it in a way that gave India the start that they needed especially after trailing the visitors 1-0. Dhawan made full use of the powerplay and scored 51 runs off just 25 balls with a strike rate of over 200. He smashed 7 fours and 2 sixes in the process and shared a solid 75-run opening stand with Rohit Sharma.
Rohit Sharma: 7.5/10
Although Rohit played a firm supporting role to Dhawan’s assault, he couldn’t himself carry on and convert his innings into a big one, as he was deceived by a slower delivery bowled by Dushmantha Chameera, who took a brilliant diving catch off his own bowling to dismiss the Indian opener for 43. The openers accumulated 70 runs in the first 6 overs for India that laid the platform for the middle order to build the innings.
Ajinkya Rahane: 6/10
Rahane looked unsettled at the crease today, as he couldn’t manage to score runs off the Sri Lankan spinners, before miscuing and top-edging a Sachitra Senanayake delivery into Tillakaratne Dilshan’s hands at mid-off. He made 25 off 21 with 3 boundaries.
Suresh Raina: 7.5/10
Raina, who at the No. 4 position, has been entrusted with the responsibilities of both an anchor, as well as a finisher, did complete justice to both the roles, as he first tried to build the innings after two quick wickets of Rohit and Rahane, and then stepped on the pedal, and scored quickly with some crucial boundaries towards the end. Before being the second of the hat-trick of wickets claimed by Perera, he had made 30 off 19 with 5 fours.
He also took a catch in the outfield to send back Dasun Shanaka.
Hardik Pandya: 8/10
Pandya was promoted ahead of Yuvraj Singh and MS Dhoni in order to propel the run-rate, and he did what was asked of him with a 12-ball 27 that included two consecutive sixes off Senanayake. He was the first of Perera’s three wickets.
He also took a good catch to send back Kapugedera.
Yuvraj Singh: 5/10
Yuvraj came to the crease in the 19th over, with Perera on a hat-trick. One couldn’t really blame him therefore, for trying to find the boundary off the very first ball, and perishing in the process, thereby giving Perera a well-deserved hat-trick, which was his first, and the fourth overall in international T20s.
Although, he picked up a good catch to send Seekuge Prasanna back.
MS Dhoni: 7/10
While the Ranchi crowd jumped in jubilation when they saw their local boy walk out to bat in the 19th over, the Indian captain couldn’t quite give his side the finishing touch, managing 9 off 5 balls.
But, he more than made up for it with two brilliant stumpings to send back Dilshan and Chandimal- two lynchpins of the Sri Lankan line-up.
Ravindra Jadeja: 7/10
Jadeja picked up two crucial wickets, that of that of Dinesh Chandimal and Chamara Kapugedera to paralyze the Sri Lankan middle order, and reinforce India’s grip over the contest.
Ravichandran Ashwin: 8.5/10
India’s best player from the last game continued his good run in this game as well, as he dismissed Sri Lanka’s most experienced batsman, Dilshan, off the very first ball of Lankan innings.
Ashwin then returned in the 17th over to dismiss Shanaka and Perera. He kept things quiet despite bowling 3 overs inside the powerplay and conceded just 14 runs from his 4 overs and picked up 3 wickets.
Jaspreet Bumrah: 7/10
When Jasprit Bumrah bowled at the Lankans today, they got to taste what facing Lasith Malinga would have been like. With his immaculate yorkers, he extinguished whatever life was left in the Lankan batting, as he was brought on in the 14th over, specifically for death bowling.
He bowled Chameera and trapped Senanayake leg-before in a spell of three overs, during which, he either bowled slower deliveries or dead straight yorkers.
Ashish Nehra: 7/10
The veteran was on song today, as he provided the early breakthroughs that were needed, in his first two overs, by dismissing Danushka Gunathilaka and Seekkuge Prasanna.
Danushka Gunathilaka: 2/10
Gunathilaka couldn’t perform under pressure as he was dismissed in the 4th over of the innings for 2 off 7 by Nehra.
Tillakaratne Dilshan: 1/10The experienced Dilshan couldn’t live up to the expectations of the Sri Lankan fans as he departed on the very first ball of the innings when he was stumped by Dhoni before the former could blink an eye.
Seekuge Prasanna: 2/10
Prasanna couldn’t perform as well, as the pressure of chasing a big target got to him as soon as he arrived. He was caught by Yuvraj at mid-on off Nehra on the fourth ball that he faced.
Dinesh Chandimal: 4/10
Like the previous game, after an early downfall, Chandimal and Kapugedera, two of the three experienced batsmen who played for Sri Lanka in the match, started the repair work. But, he couldn’t break the shackles that were built up by the Indian bowlers, and some lighting fast glove-work by the Indian skipper ended his innings.
Chamara Kapugedera: 4/10
Kapugedera hit some lusty blows before being almost caught by Rohit Sharma, only for the replays to reveal that the ball had just kissed the turf before hitting the grounded hands of a diving Rohit at long-off.
He couldn’t make the best use of that reprieve, although, as he was caught in the deep by Pandya off Jadeja for 32.
Milinda Siriwardena: 4/10
Siriwardena remained unbeaten on 25 off 17 but it was a knock in vain. He couldn’t pick up a wicket either.
Dasun Shanaka: 5/10
Shanaka hit three sixes in his knock 27 to try and present a final case for Sri Lanka, but Ashwin wrapped him up in his second spell. He wasn’t able to provide a breakthrough either.
Thisara Perera: 6/10
Perera claimed a hat-trick in the 19th over of the Indian innings picking up the wickets of Pandya, Raina, and Yuvraj off successive deliveries, thereby hindering the final flourish that the Indians were aiming at.
But he couldn’t replicate that performance with the bat as he was dismissed for a first-ball duck.
Sachitra Senanayake: 4/10
Despite claiming Rahane’s wicket, Senanayake went for 40 runs in his 4 overs, and he was trapped leg-before by Bumrah before he could disturb the scorecard.
Kasun Rajitha: 2/10
Rajitha learnt in this game that you need skills to make the best use of conditions, and not the conditions alone to prosper as a fast bowler. While in Pune he was successful on a green top, he was belted around the park on a relatively flat deck in Ranchi. He went for 45 in 4 overs and couldn’t pick up a wicket.
Dushmantha Chameera: 5/10
Chameera picked up two wickets that included a brilliant catch off his own bowling but also went for 38 in his 4 overs.