Krunal Pandya tested positive for coronavirus on Tuesday and as a result, the second T20I was postponed to Wednesday. Eight immediate contacts with the all-rounder were ruled out of the ongoing series. India had to make seven forced changes in their eleven with the available players in the squad, which meant they played six specialist bowlers and a batsman short.
To make matters worse, India batted first on a sluggish surface that turned and stopped. India managed only 132 but made it seem like a competitive score with tight bowling. Sri Lanka eventually sealed the victory in the final over.
“The surface had turn, and it was stopping a bit. Of course, we knew one batsman was short, and we knew we had to construct the innings smartly, and we had to content ourselves at some point. We were 10-15 runs short.
“However, I am very proud of the boys because we gave a very good fight. That never-say-die attitude is amazing. Hats off to the boys for taking the game to the last game over defending just 132. Credit to both bowlers and batters,” said Shikhar Dhawan after India’s defeat on Wednesday.
Sri Lanka on the brink of history against India
With India in crisis and struggling to find the balance, Sri Lanka are a win away from registering their maiden bilateral T20I series victory over India.
Starting in 2009, India and Sri Lanka have locked horns in seven T20 series, with India winning six and one ending in a draw. Even in multiteam tournaments, India have had the upper hand. However, to Sri Lanka’s credit, they beat India in the 2014 T20 World Cup final in Dhaka to lift their second world title.
The final T20I, which will be the decider, will be played on Thursday.
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