In­dia beat Sri Lanka to clinch Test se­ries

Jadeja sus­pended from 3rd Sri Lanka Test

Kuwait Times - - SPORTS -

Skip­per Vi­rat Kohli yes­ter­day hailed Ravin­dra Jadeja for his all-round per­for­mance in the se­ries-clinch­ing vic­tory against Sri Lanka, say­ing the left-arm spin­ner gave the side a great bal­ance.

The cel­e­bra­tions were short-lived, how­ever, after cricket’s gov­ern­ing body sus­pended Jadeja from the third and fi­nal Test later this week for dan­ger­ous play dur­ing his match-win­ning per­for­mance in Colombo. In­dia crushed the home team by an in­nings and 53 runs on day four of the sec­ond Test in Colombo to take an unas­sail­able 2-0 lead in the three-match se­ries.

Jadeja, the world num­ber one bowler in ICC Test rank­ings, claimed five sec­ond-in­nings wick­ets as In­dia bowled out the hosts for 386. He also contributed an un­beaten 70 in In­dia’s crush­ing first in­nings to­tal of 622-9 de­clared. “Guys who have both abil­i­ties are very rare to find. That’s where we think they’re very pre­cious, spe­cially in the longer for­mat be­cause they pro­vide you with great bal­ance,” Kohli told re­porters.

“He can give you a very quick 60-70 any­where at any stage and it can re­ally turn the game... he’s al­ways in the game. I would say he’s a very valu­able crick­eter for us.” But In­dia will have to make do with­out him in the fi­nal Test start­ing Satur­day in Pallekele, after the In­ter­na­tional Cricket Coun­cil slapped Jadeja with a one-match ban and a fine for dan­ger­ous play. Jadeja fell foul of the umpires after the fi­nal de­liv­ery of the 58th over when, field­ing off his own bowl­ing, he threw the ball back at bats­man Dimuth Karunaratne, who had not left his crease.

The ball nar­rowly missed him in a man­ner which the on-field umpires de­ter­mined as “dan­ger­ous”, the ICC said in a re­lease. Sri Lanka had handed In­dia the ad­van­tage after be­ing dis­missed for 183 in their first in­nings and con­ced­ing a 439-run lead.

But the hosts fought back dur­ing their fol­lowon with a de­fi­ant 191-run sec­ond-wicket part­ner­ship be­tween the left-handed Karunaratne and Kusal Mendis, who fell for 110 be­fore stumps on day three.

How­ever Kohli kept ro­tat­ing his bowlers at the Sin­halese Sports Club Ground to keep the bats­men on their toes, and the strat­egy paid off.

“Today we said even if we don’t get wick­ets early on we are go­ing to en­joy these tough times as well, be­cause they re­ally im­prove you as a side,” said Kohli, who be­came the only In­dian cap­tain to win two Test se­ries in Sri Lanka.

“Suc­cess will come your way but you need pa­tience. Very happy that we went through the dif­fi­cult phases as well and you never get com­pla­cent as a side then.” The hosts, who re­sumed the day on 209-2, lost two wick­ets in the morn­ing ses­sion, in­clud­ing that of skip­per Di­nesh Chandi­mal for two. The bats­man was caught at slip off Jadeja’s left-arm spin.

Karunaratne kept up the fight dur­ing his 69run fifth-wicket stand with for­mer cap­tain An­gelo Mathews, who made a gritty 36 from 66 balls be­fore be­ing caught be­hind off Jadeja.

“He is a very spe­cial bowler. That is the rea­son why he is ranked num­ber one in world rank­ing. Credit to him for stick­ing to his plans,” said

Chandi­mal. Ravichan­dran Ash­win, who took five wick­ets in the first in­nings, and pace­men Hardik Pandya shared two wick­ets each. The In­dian bats­men had set up the vic­tory, with Chetesh­war Pu­jara and Ajinkya Ra­hane hit­ting fine cen­turies.

Pu­jara, who top-scored with 133, and Ra­hane, who made 132, put to­gether a 217-run stand after the tourists elected to bat first. “Ac­tu­ally we were out­played in the first in­nings with the bat and ball both. Credit goes to them: they bat­ted bril­liantly in the first in­nings and put us un­der huge pres­sure,” said Chandi­mal. “As a unit we fought back well and I am re­ally happy how the boys played in the sec­ond in­nings. We just want to take the pos­i­tives out of this game and are look­ing for­ward to next one,” he added.


— AP

COLOMBO: Sri Lanka’s An­gelo Mathews, left, plays a shot dur­ing the fourth day’s play of sec­ond cricket test match against In­dia in Colombo, Sri Lanka, yes­ter­day.

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