A BLISTERING attack by Sanath Jayasuriya in the beginning and a seasoned half century by Tillakaratne Dilshan allowed Sri Lanka their first win in the rain-truncated match at Manuka Oval in Canberra, the Australian capital.
Chasing a reduced target of 154 runs in 21 overs, Lankan tigers romped home in style with two overs to spare.
India had earlier made 195 runs in the stipulated 29 over, with Rohit Sharma scoring 70 runs, studded with boundaries manufactured with ingenuity and a huge six off Muralitharan into the stands.
Indian bowling, however, could not withstand the sudden blitzkrieg launched by Jayasuriya, who scored 27 runs from just 13 balls, hitting two huge sixes in Sreesanth’s second over.
The Sri Lankan was playing his usual game, when he suddenly top edged an Ishant Sharma ball whose trajectory was a bit sharp and came too quickly on to the bat. Skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni lapped him up eagerly but Jayasuriya little cameo had given the start Sri Lanka needed.
With a required run rate of six run an over, the Lankans batted sensibly, and Dilshan anchored the inning well, scoring an unbeaten 62 runs. He was particularly impressive cutting and pulling the ball but struggled to make contact while playing big shots in the initial overs.
The match started late today, with heavy rain falling in the morning, it appeared that the one-day would be washed off. However, after three hours of hard work put in by the ground staff, a 29-over match was announced much to the delight of the Canberra residents.
The Indians, who batted first, found the ball not coming on to the bat, but Tendulkar played some characteristic shots through the covers and to the mid-wicket boundary, giving India a good start.
However, both he and Virender Sehwag were caught by the third man, putting breaks on the Indian score card, with both Rohit Sharma and Gautam Ghambir finding it difficult to cut lose.
Rohit Sharma ended the draught for boundaries, when he cut one hard for four runs in the 15th over. Thereafter, both Ghambir and Sharma played some marvelous cricketing shots to take India to 113 runs for two wickets.
The former fell to a tight piece of fielding by Lasith Malinga, who took the throw from the point fielder and flicked the ball on two of the stumps, where Ghambir was found wanting in the crease.
After the Southpaw’s departure, skipper Dhoni joined Sharma and both lead a late charge against the Sri Lankan bowling.
Sharma scored 70 runs in the innings, studded by a huge six, while the Indian skipper found the fence three times in his 26-ball 31.
Indian chances suffered heavy damage, when more showers intervened just after the Indian inning ended and the target was reduced for Sri Lanka and they had to chase 154 runs in 21 overs.



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