"Honoured to receive a bat from my role model"- Chamika Karunaratne thanks Hardik Pandya for the gesture

Hardik Pandya gifting a bat to Chamika Karunaratne (PC: Twitter)
Hardik Pandya gifting a bat to Chamika Karunaratne (PC: Twitter)
Gokul Nair

Chamika Karunaratne made his T20I debut for Sri Lanka during the first T20I fixture against India. The pacer was presented with a bat before the match by his idol Hardik Pandya.

Following the conclusion of the match, which saw India take a 1-0 lead courtesy of a 38-run win, Karunaratne thanked the all-rounder for his gesture on social media.

"Honoured to receive a bat from my role model @hardikpandya93 thank you so much for giving me your bat, you are an amazing human being and I will never forget this day. May God bless you always. πŸ™πŸ»"

During the pre-match warm-up Pandya was seen asking for a bat from the dressing room. The all-rounder received the bat from Ishan Kishan, which he proceeded to hand over to Chamika Karunaratne.

The player tested out the new bat with a stance and thanked Pandya for the same before parting ways with a fist bump.

Chamika Karunaratne endured a bleak debut

Chamika Karunaratne had a solid outing in the ODI series, especially with the bat where he contributed vital runs down the order.

The 25-year-old was handed the new ball alongside Dushmanta Chameera in the first T20I after the hosts had won the toss. While Chameera found some swing up front, Karunaratne couldn't get the ball to move around much and was given only a one-over spell in the Powerplay.

He later returned back into the attack and got his maiden wicket by dismissing the settled Shikhar Dhawan. Karunaratne ended up with figures of 1-34 following a splendid final over that yielded no boundaries.

Hardik Pandya, on the other hand, had a game to forget. The swasbuckling all-rounder could only muster 10 runs off 12 deliveries with the bat. He also dropped a sitter inside the circle while fielding and was hit for a maximum off his very first delivery while bowling. Pandya finished with a wicket in the end by removing the struggling Ashen Bandara.

Sri Lanka have now lost 10 out of their last 11 T20Is and will have to come up with an exceptional performance to topple this spiritied India side. The second T20I is scheduled for June 26 at the R Premadasa Stadium in Colombo.

Edited by Anantaajith Ra
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