Colombo: Shikhar Dhawan (86*) and Ishan Kishan (59) starred with the bat as India defeated Sri Lanka by seven wickets in the first ODI of the three-match series here at the R Premadasa Stadium on Sunday. With this win, India has gained a 1-0 lead in the three-match series. The second ODI will now be played on Tuesday.
Chasing 263, India got off to a flying start as Prithvi Shaw took a special liking to Sri Lanka seamers. However, Shaw's (43) knock was ended in the sixth over as Dhanajaya de Silva sent him back to the pavilion, and this brought birthday boy Ishan Kishan to the middle.
Kishan took a special liking to Sri Lanka spinners and he kept on dispatching them all around the park. En route, Kishan brought up his fifty off just 33 balls, and as a result, he registered the second-fastest fifty for a player on his ODI debut. The 85-run stand for the second wicket came to an end in the 18th over as Lakshan Sandakan dismissed Kishan (59), reducing India to 145/2.
Manish Pandey then joined Dhawan in the middle and the duo kept the scoreboard moving for the visitors. Both batters put on 72 runs for the third wicket, but with just 48 runs away from the target, Pandey (26) lost his wicket to Dhananjaya de Silva. In the end, Dhawan and Suryakumar Yadav (31*) guided India to a victory by seven wickets with 80 balls to spare.
Earlier, India kept on taking wickets at regular intervals, but Chamika Karunaratne's unbeaten 43-run knock helped Sri Lanka post 262/9. For India, Kuldeep Chahar, Yuzvendra Chahal, and Deepak Chahar returned with two wickets each.
Opting to bat first, Sri Lanka got off to a steady start as openers Avishka Fernando and Minod Bhanuka put on 49 runs inside the first nine overs. However, the introduction of Yuzvendra Chahal paid off straight away in the 10th over as the leg-spinner dismissed Fernando (32).
Bhanuka Rajapaksa then joined Minod in the middle and the duo put on 36 runs for the second wicket, but this stand was cut short in the 17th over as Kuldeep Yadav sent Rajapaksa (24) back to the pavilion. In the very same over, Kuldeep had Minod (27) caught at the first slip and as a result, Sri Lanka was reduced to 89/3.
Dhananjaya de Silva (14) disappointed with the bat as he went in for an inside-out shot over the covers, but he only managed to hand a catch to Bhuvneshwar Kumar off the bowling of Krunal Pandya, and Sri Lanka was left in a spot of bother at 117/4. Skipper Shanaka and Charith Asalanka then got together at the crease and both batters moved the scoreboard slowly and steadily. However, the 49-run stand between these two batters was ended by Deepak Chahar in the 38th over as he dismissed Asalanka (38), reducing Sri Lanka to 166/5.
Shanaka played a knock of 39 runs, but India bowlers managed to keep the run-scoring in check and as a result, the hosts were restricted under the 265-run mark. In the final overs, Dushmantha Chameera (13) and Chamika Karunaratne (43*) hit some valuable big shots to give Sri Lanka a competitive score in the match.
Brief Scores: Sri Lanka 262/9 (Chamika Karunaratne 43*, Dasun Shanaka 39, Kuldeep Yadav 2-48) vs India 263/3 (Shikhar Dhawan 86*, Ishan Kishan 59, Dhananjaya de Silva 2-49).