Fast bowler Deepak Chahar hammered 69 off 82 deliveries and shared an unbeaten 84-run partnership for the 8th wicket with Bhuvneshwar Kumar to bring India back from the dead and win the second One-day International by 3 wickets for an unassailable 2-0 lead in the 3-match ODI series.
Sri Lanka had made 275/9 in their 50 overs while India chased the target with 5 balls to spare.
Team India looked down and out after left-handed batsman Krunal Pandya was dismissed as the seventh man with a team score of 193. Although there were 89 balls to get the remaining 83 runs, India had only 3 wickets left.
But Chahar played calmly, hitting 7 fours and a six while vice-captain Bhuvneshwar scored 19 runs off 28 balls and importantly guided his junior through the chase.
India was caught by surprise as the Sri Lankans brought in leg-spinner Wanindu Hasaranga in just the 3rd over of the innings. The leggie’s googly beat Prithvi Shaw (13 off 11 balls) who was bowled.
Hasaranga got the other two important wickets of Shikhar Dhawan (29 runs off 38 balls) and Krunal Pandya (35 runs off 54 balls) to leave India tottering. However, Hasaranga could not find support from the other bowlers.
Opener Avishka Fernando (50 runs off 71 balls) and batsman Charith Asalanka (65 runs off 68 balls) scored half-centuries to lead the Lankans to a challenging total.
Leg-spinner Yuzvendra Chahal (3/50) and Bhuvneshwar Kumar (3/54) were the most successful bowlers for India. Seamer Bhuvneshwar got rid of both the half-centurions after Chahal had got the first two wickets.
This was India’s 93rd win over Sri Lanka, the most by a team against a particular team in ODI cricket.
India had won the first ODI on Sunday by 7 wickets.
Brief scores: Sri Lanka 275/9 in 50 overs (C Asalanka 65, A Fernando 50, C Karunaratne 44 not out, Y Chahal 3/50, B Kumar 3/54) lost to India 277/7 in 49.1 overs (D Chahar 69 not out, S Yadav 53, M Pandey 37, K Pandya 35, W Hasaranga 3/37) by three wickets.