Sri Lanka completely outplayed by India, accepts captain Chandimal
Sri Lanka captain Dinesh Chandimal conceded his side were "completely outplayed" by India in suffering defeat with a day to spare in Colombo, but praised the application of opener Dimuth Karunaratne.
A dogged 141 from Karunaratne provided the main resistance for the hosts on day four, but Ravindra Jadeja claimed figures of 5-152 to bowl Sri Lanka out for 386 and record victory by an innings and 53 runs.
India had racked up a giant 622-9 declared in their first innings to put themselves in a dominant position but Chandimal felt there were positive signs in his side's showing, despite a second successive heavy defeat.
"We were completely outplayed," Chandimal acknowledged after Sri Lanka fell 2-0 down in the three-Test series. "The first-innings effort was disappointing and it cost us heavily. They batted well too.
"Scoring 622 is huge, that put us under a lot of pressure. We didn't think we would get out so cheaply. We were surprised as well because the pitch started turning more than we thought – more than it had in the first one-and-a-half days. The reason we lost the game is because we got out for 183 in the first innings.
"I am really pleased with the way we batted in the second innings. We need to pick up the positives and look forward to the next game. It was a fine effort by both Kusal Mendis (110) and Dimuth Karunaratne. After yesterday, we had some discussion and in those meetings, we planned about how to go about things today. I still feel that everyone fought very hard but we kept losing wickets.
"Dimuth played a special innings. As an opener, we expect that kind of innings from him, so we're very happy he played that innings on a very tough deck like this one. Of the innings that I've seen over the last three or four years, this was one of the best – both from our team and the various oppositions. It was an excellent innings. He always goes to the crease looking to score runs. That must have helped him get these 140-odd runs."
An injury to seamer Nuwan Pradeep made life even harder for Sri Lanka and Chandimal confirmed he will miss the final Test of the series at Pallekele.
"With the state that Pradeep is in, he will be out for two or three weeks," added Chandimal. "It's really hard to play with one seamer. What we thought about is that with these conditions, the only way we could have balanced this team was with one seamer only in the attack. That was the plan. Unfortunately, he got injured and that became a big problem.
"It's a big disadvantage not to have Nuwan Pradeep and Suranga Lakmal [for the next Test, starting on Saturday]. We haven't made any decisions on selection, because it was only in this match that Nuwan got injured. We haven't spoken to the selectors. We will make a plan in the future and try to execute that."