India faced a tough situation with the Sri Lankans gaining back their momentum in the second One-Day International (ODI) of the five-match ODI series. The home team romps with a nine-wicket win in Hambantota on Tuesday. Pretty bad show by the Indians gave an edge to the home team. The dismal performance by the Indian Team kept the fans guessing whether it was the same team that took on the Lankans in style on Saturday. Thisara Perera was the Man of the Match as he claimed three pricey wickets in his first spell while giving no runs. And the wickets were of Virender Sehwag, Virat Kohli and Suresh Raina. In the end Lankans tamed the meek Indian tiger by winning with nine wickets.
Team India who went in as the supermen came out, heads hung low on the eventful day. The start was given a good thrust by the openers Gautam Gambhir and Virender Sehwag. However Sehwag could not get into rhythm like on Saturday and succumbed to Perera. Later the rest walked back in similar fashion with no show of grace. Only Gambhir regained his form and scored 65 runs. India wound up in the 34th over for a meek 138 runs. That itself speaks about the way the visitors batted in the first half of the game. Angelo Mathews joined Perera in destructing the Indians batting line up and hauled another three wickets.
The Lankans who came into bat in the second half, finished the play clinically in the twentieth over with just a wicket loss. Lankans scored 139/1 in 19.5 overs. Upul Tharanga and Tillakaratne Dilshan, the Lankan openers, pulverized the Indian bowling on their way to a stand of 119 off only 100 deliveries. Enabling the home team to level the series with a 1-1 show. Absolutely no word of praise for the visitors in any department of the game.
Sri Lankans would like to consolidate their position by going in with a sound game plan and positive encouragement while taking on the wounded visitors at the Mahinda Rajapaksa International Stadium on July 28 for their third encounter. India is unpredictable after watching the two extremes in performance. May be they might bounce back or lay meek. Let's catch up on Saturday for a ring side view of the battle between the two teams. (With inputs from internet-AW AarKay)
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