What a finish to an absolute cracker of a match, a wide from Fernando to give India it’s second victory in the series. There is a reason why you cannot rule out Dhoni in a situation like this. Amazing turn-arounds in the game as India hold on to romp away with a victory against the hosts. India now lead the 5-match series 2-0. Bhuvneshwar Kumar should be credited for the compassion he has shown on the crease, what an innings from the pacer and what a day to bring it. Nail-biting 3 wickets win for India.

Akila Dananjaya named man of the match for his phenomenal bowling display of 6 for 54. 

“It was quite an exciting game of cricket. It gave us a tough test out there but was good to come through. Was good to see two 100-run stands in a 230 run chase and then a collapse. Strange game but good we are through said Indian captain Virat kohli in the match presentation.

“Disappointed. We came very close and couldn’t finish it, Dhoni and Bhuvneshwar played well said, Tharanga the Lankan captain.

Disciplined innings from former skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni and pacer Bhuvneshwar Kumar saw India defeating Sri Lanka by three wickets in a thrilling second One-Day International here on Thursday

Chasing a revised target of 231 due to rain, India were cruising at 108 for no loss in the 16th over. But the match turned on its head in a space of six overs as the visitors lost seven wickets for just 22 runs. 

All-rounder Akila Dananjaya created havoc in the India’s batting line-up as he scalped six wickets in his 10 overs.

But then Dhoni (45 not out) and Bhuvneshwar A(53 not out) forged a match-winning partnership to seal the deal for India.

India now lead the five match series 2-0. The visitors had defeated Sri Lanka by nine wickets in the ODI at Dambulla.

Indian openers Dhawan and Rohit started the chase perfectly by forging a 109-run partnership. The duo slammed Sri Lankan bowlers all around the park. In the process, Rohit completed his half-century. But after adding four more runs, the Mumbai batsman was adjudged leg before wicket off Dananjaya.

Trying to be aggressive, Dhawan mistimed a shot and fell prey to Milinda Siriwardana in the very next over.

All eyes were on new batsmen Lokesh Rahul, Kedar Jadhav and Virat Kohli, but the trio failed to rise to the expectations and were dismissed by Dananjaya in the same over at scores of 1., 4 and 4 respectively.

With half of the side back to the pavilion, it was now on Dhoni and all-rounder Hardik Pandya but the the latter disappointed as he was also dismissed by Dananjaya after three overs with no runs to his credit.

With chances of winning looking sleek, Bhuvneshwar then joined Dhoni in the middle and played sensibly. The duo forged a 100-run partnership and finished the proceeding with more than two overs to spare. 

Earlier, sensible innings from Siriwardana (58) and Chamara Kapugedera (40) helped Sri Lanka score 236/8. But due to rain, the target was revised to 230.

Apart from the duo, opener Niroshan Dickwella (31) contributed to the cause for the hosts.

After going down in the first ODI by nine wickets, Sri Lanka regrouped their strategy in this game and started off on a positive note but some poor shot selection from the in-form and experienced players resulted in their downfall in the middle overs.

However, Siriwardana and Kapugedera played the ball to its merit to stabilise the innings. But after the fall of the latter’s wicket, the lower-order failed to provide the much required support and, thus, the hosts only managed to score a chaseable target.

On the other hand, Indian bowlers stepped up to the occasion in the overcast conditions and chipped in with vital wickets at regular intervals. The fielding was also up to the mark.

After India won the toss and put the Islanders in to bat, the hosts crossed the 40-run-mark in the eighth over but then Dickwella was sent back to the pavilion. Soon Danushka Gunathilaka, who troubled the visitors in the first ODI, was dismissed by leg-spinner Yuzvendra Chahal.

Once again the middle-order got exposed soon and experienced players Upul Tharanga (9) and Angelo Mathews (20) were dismissed by Hardik Pandya and Axar Patel, respectively.

But just when things seemed poor for the hosts, Siriwardana and Kapugedera displayed their temperament and forged the crucial runs for their team. After giving a tough fight in the middle, the duo was, however, sent packing by Jasprit Bumrah.

Then the lower-order batsmen — ananjaya (9), Dushmantha Chameera (6) and Vishwa Fernando (3) — once again failed to make their mark and Sri Lanka only managed to score 236 in their allotted 50 overs.

For India, pacer Bumrah scalped four wickets while leg-spinner Chahal took two.

(With inputs from IANS)

Team India (Playing XI): Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan, Virat Kohli(c), Lokesh Rahul, MS Dhoni(w), Kedar Jadhav, Hardik Pandya, Axar Patel, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Jasprit Bumrah, Yuzvendra Chahal

Team Sri Lanka (Playing XI): Niroshan Dickwella(w), Danushka Gunathilaka, Kusal Mendis, Upul Tharanga(c), Angelo Mathews, Chamara Kapugedera, Milinda Siriwardana, Akila Dananjaya, Lasith Malinga, Vishwa Fernando, Dushmantha Chameera

India is currently leading the five-match ODI series by 1-0 after romping home a nine-wicket victory over Lankans in first game of the series. 


11:36 PM IST |44.3 overs bowled, India 231/7;  Dhoni 45(68), Bhuvneshwar Kumar 53(80)

What a finish to an absolute cracker of a match, a wide from Fernando to give India it’s second victory in the series. There is a reason why you cannot rule out Dhoni in a situation like this. Amazing turn-arounds in the game as India hold on to romp away with a victory against the hosts. India now lead the 5-match series 2-0. Bhuvneshwar Kumar should be credited for the compassion he has shown on the crease, what an innings from the pacer and what a day to bring it.

11:33 PM IST |44 overs bowled, India 229/7;  Dhoni 45(68), Bhuvneshwar Kumar 52(78)

Bhuvneshwar, brilliant innings by the Indian pacer his maiden 50 comes on the day India needed it the most. Credits to Dhoni for being a presence at the other end. India needs Just 2 runs for victory.

11:24 PM IST |42 overs bowled, India 217/7;  Dhoni 39(64), Bhuvneshwar Kumar 47(74)

Bhuvneshwar stealing it away from the hosts, what a bowler vs bowler encounter here at Pallekele. Dananjaya did it with the ball, Bhuvneshwar is replying with the bat, cracking cricket going on. India just 14 runs away from victory after tumbling in between.

11:09 PM IST |39 overs bowled, India 192/7;  Dhoni 33(52), Bhuvneshwar Kumar 28(64)

Bhuvneshwar Kumar is the surprise package here, he has been confident till now. With Dhoni on the other end india is edging towards another turn-over here. Frustration is clearly evident on the Lankan fielders and bowlers as it seems to be dragging away from them. When Dhoni is there you cannot rule India out till the last ball.

10: 52 PM IST | Dhoni is blessed with immense luck they say, true as the former India got beaten by Fernando but luckily the ball didn’t hit the stumps with enough force to bring the bails down. What luck

10: 48 PM IST |34 overs bowled, India 171/7;  Dhoni 29(43), Bhuvneshwar Kumar 12(43)

Dhoni and Bhuvneshwar steadily carrying the ship for India, 60 more required for India from here. Can we see a Dhoni show here again tonught.

10: 27 PM IST |29 overs bowled, India 156/7;  Dhoni 22(30), Bhuvneshwar Kumar 9(26)

Back after drinks, India are still very much in it. If Dhoni is there, India is there. Bhuvneshwar Kumar will have to pull off a supportive side role here to make sure India gets home victorious from here. This could be Kumar’s chance to earn that name, this time with the bat.

10: 20 PM IST | Drinks! Dhoni, Dhoni cheers the crowd. A test of Dhoni’s finishing skills here.

10: 15 PM IST |27 overs bowled, India 150/7;  Dhoni 17(23), Bhuvneshwar Kumar 8(21)

150 up for India as Dhoni holds on to the crease with Bhuvneshwar. Can the former Indian skipper take India to victory from here, he has done it in the past and undoubtedly he is the best man to have on the crease in such a tricky situation. A stern test for Dhoni, his work here will reflect on his future selection. 

10: 05 PM IST |25 overs bowled, India 141/7;  Dhoni 13(18), Bhuvneshwar Kumar 2(14)

Dhoni is still there on the crease the fact that would be in the hearts of all the Indian fans who were expecting a different scenario after Rohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan’s early heroics. Dananjaya would be the hero for Sri Lanka if the hosts manage to take the game away from here.

09: 52 PM IST | Wicket! Axar lbw b Dananjaya 6(9)

Sixth wicket for Dananjaya as Lanka gets away with it. This man has single-handedly got them back into the game. Axar Patel came forward to get that on his bat but the ball slids on to the pad. This could be the script for Sri Lanka’s first victory in the series.

09: 45 PM IST | Wicket! Hardik Pandya st Dickwella b Dananjaya 0(3)

Five wickets haul for Dananjaya, Indians seem to have no answer to those googlies. Absolutely magical from the Lankan spinner he is enjoying his best against one of the best batting line-ups in world cricket. Pandya jumps out of the crease only to find himself far from the ball as it goes into the gloves of Dickwella who makes no mistake behind the wicket. Sensational bowling

09: 40 PM IST | Wicket! Rahul b Dananjaya 4(6)

One after another as Indian team bows down to Dananjaya, the Lankan spinner gets his 4th victim of the day as Rahul gets bowled. Magical spell from the lankan turner which has turned the game around for Sri Lanka. A google once again and Rahul too fails to read that as the ball runs into the stumps.

 09: 32 PM IST | Wicket! Kohli b Dananjaya 4(2) 

Dananjaya continues his genius, what a ball that was absolutely rattles the Indian skipper. Kohli cleaned up. Sri Lanka’s new weapon is firing and nothing seems to stop him. Googly does the trick again as Kohli got his middle stump wrecked.

09: 29 PM IST | Wicket! Kedar Jadhav b Dananjaya 1(3)

Dananjaya on a roll here, he has been very difficult to pick. Jadhav is the next one to fell prey to the spinner, The googly came haunting at Jadhav who taught he would just push it aside but it crashes on to the stumps confirming the right-handers departure.

Kedhar Jadhav comes on to the crease for India

09: 25 PM IST | Wicket! Dhawan c Mathews b Siriwardana 49(50)

Siriwardana gets his man as Mathews pulls off a stuner, Dhawan misses his fifty by just a single run. The southpaw must be disappointed with that, he was going strong untill this.

KL Rahul is the new man in for India

09: 20 PM IST | Wicket! Rohit lbw b Dananjaya 54(45)

Rohit Sharma goes back to the dressing room after a brilliant effort of 54 in 45 balls. The Indian vice captain tried sweeping it away but was unable to pick Dananjaya as the ball went straight on to the pads and the umpire had no confusions there.

09: 14 PM IST |FIFTY* Rohit Sharma 50(43) 

Brilliant innings from Rohit Sharma, he has taken only the positives from the last game as he came back much composed in this one. It took him 43 balls to clinch that half century mark though he struggled on 49 for 3 balls before finally getting his fifty.

09: 07 PM IST |13 overs bowled, India 89/0;  Rohit Sharma 47(37), Shikhar Dhawan 37(41)

Eight runs from the 13th over as umpires call for a drinks break. It seems no stopping for the Indian openers from here with both of them closing on their half centuries.

09: 00 PM IST |12 overs bowled, India 81/0;  Rohit Sharma 45(35), Shikhar Dhawan 31(37)

Rohit and Dhawan are in absolutely no hurry as they continue doing the good work in the middle. There seems to be no stopping for the duo as Rohit inches close to his first half century in the ODI series.

08: 40 PM IST |8 overs bowled, India 52/0;  Rohit Sharma 30(26), Shikhar Dhawan 18(22)

India going strong with 52 on board in the first eight overs of the game. 4 overs for Malinga and 2 for Angelo Mathews as he is brought into attack early in the game.

08: 28 PM IST | 5 overs bowled, India 36/0;  Rohit Sharma 19(17), Shikhar Dhawan 13(13)

Malinga continues the Lankan attack but little to trouble the two Indian openers standing firm on the pitch. Shikhar Rohit hit a six of Malinga in the 3rd over to pile up pressure on the experienced pacer. For now its all going like a fairy tale for India with two set batsmen out there.

08: 10 PM IST | 2 overs bowled, India 12/0;  Rohit Sharma 6(6), Shikhar Dhawan 2(6)

Stable start for Indian openers, the left-hand, right-hand combination looks absolutely comfortable as they face Maling in the initials overs here at Pallekle.

07: 50 PM IST | Match expected to restart at 8:00 PM IST

07: 30 PM IST | After light showers, the covers are now being taken off. The game has been reduced to 47 overs with 231 runs to achieve for India.

06: 05 PM IST | 50 overs bowled, Sri Lanka 236/8; Dushmantha Chameera  6(7), Vishwa Fernando 3(6) That’s it Sri Lanka post a moderate 236 on board after a late havoc from Bumrah.

05: 56 PM IST | Wicket! Dananjaya c Axar b Bumrah 9(11)

Comfortable grab for Axar Patel as Dananjaya loops it in the air, the tail-ender was looking to gets thing going in the last few overs of the game, he stepped out and mis-timed the delivery landing it straight into the hands of Axar Patel. Thats 4 wickets for Bumrah so far in the innings.

Dushmantha Chameera comes into bat

05: 49 PM IST | Wicket! Kapugedera b Bumrah 40(61) (46.6 overs)

Absolute blinder from Bumrah, he cleans up Kapugedera before he could have it made it big in the innings. What a ball that was from the Indian pacer, it stormed into the stumps beating the Lankan batsman with genuine pace. Bumrah getting on to his best.

Akila Dananjaya, left handed batsman comes to the crease

05: 39 PM IST | Wicket! Siriwardana c Rohit b Bumrah 58(58)  (44.6 overs)

Finally a much needed breakthrough for India, comfortable catch for Rohit Sharma as Siriwardana’s hefty innings comes to an end. Once again a slower delivery does the trick for Bumrah.

05: 20 PM IST | 41 overs bowled, Sri Lanka 182/5;  Milinda Siriwardana 44(45), Chamara Kapugedera 23(44)

Axar Patel through with his 10 overs with the figures of 1 for 30.  The partnership is getting stronger with every passing over. Sri Lanka can now target to finish close to 250 but a blow from here can once again change the game around.

05: 05 PM IST | 36 overs bowled, Sri Lanka 162/5;  Milinda Siriwardana 34(31), Chamara Kapugedera 15(28)

Sri Lanka now steadily taking their run rate up. Siriwardana now the highest run getter of the Lankan innings. Kedar Jadhav and Bhuvneshwar Kumar are ticking the overs for India.

04: 50 PM IST | 33 overs bowled, Sri Lanka 141/5;  Milinda Siriwardana 20(22), Chamara Kapugedera 10(19)

Sriwardana does some rescue work here for Lanka, hits Bhuvneshwar for a boundary. His confidence made that shot look more better. 13 extras bowled by Indians up till now, but the wickets have compensated for those few spare runs. The partnership between the right hand left hand combination is now 19 of 30.

04: 39 PM IST |  30 overs bowled, Sri Lanka 125/5;  Milinda Siriwardana 12(15), Chamara Kapugedera 3(8)

The scoring rate has gone down with the Lankans struggling to keep their wickets stable. Pace-spin combination on from the Indian side as Bumrah-Axar continue the attack. Not much to do here for Kohli except for rotating his bowlers well. disheartened home fans still hoping for some good show at Pallekelle.

Chamara Kapugedera, is the new man in for Sri Lanka

04: 32 PM IST |OUT! Mathews lbw b Axar 20(41) (28.3 overs)

A fuller delivery from Axar beats Angelow Mathews as it strikes straight on to his pads. Not a great shot selection from the right-hander as he goes off disappointed.  No review left for Sri Lanka, so no chance of getting the decision received. 

04: 28 PM IST | Kedar Jadhav comes in to bowl the 28th over, Kohli making clear that he won’t entertain the Lankans for long.

04: 24 PM IST | 27 overs bowled, Sri Lanka 114/4; Angelo Mathews 15(36), Milinda Siriwardana 10(10)

Siriwardana unlike others has got going right from the beginning, he has started off comfortably. India still on a hunt for another as Kohli and boys look to pack the Lankan innings as early as they could.

Left handed batsman, Milinda Siriwardana, in at number six

04: 13 PM IST |OUT! Kusal Mendis lbw b Chahal 19(48) (23.3 overs)

This was coming as Mendis was on sweeping spree, he got away with Axar but Chahal took pace of the ball and kept it slow to deceive the right hander. That ball got better of Mendis and hit him straight on the pads. The umpire took time before declaring the wicket and Mendis wasted Sri Lanka’s review as he was not satisfied with the umpire. Second wicket for Chahal who seems to be getting in the game.

03: 57 PM IST | 19 overs bowled, Sri Lanka 85/3; Angelo Mathews 2(10), Kusal Mendis 14(36)

Indian skipper Kohli is enjoying a good start here at Pallekelle as India are looking all attack on Lankans. Expected bowling change from India as Axar Patel comes in to bowl, just one run of that 19th over from Patel. 

Right-handed Angelo Mathews is the new man in for Sri Lanka

03:45 PM IST | OUT! Tharanga c Kohli b Hardik Pandya 9(7) (15.6 overs)

The 3rd wicket down for Lankans as the Sri Lankan skipper edges it straight into the hands of Virat Kohli, who made no mistakes what so ever at the second slip. First wicket for Pabndya as he joins the  party. After a  good start Lanka tumbling again.

03:35 PM IST | OUT! Gunathilaka st Dhoni b Chahal 19(37) (14.1 overs)

Even a fumbling Dhoni can be very effective behind the wicket, the former Indian skipper grabs Gunathilaka  wide of the crease, Chahal gets his man. Chahal’s hard work on his line finally paying off as the Lankan’s finding it difficult to handle his spin. Dhoni continues his expertise behind the stumps, clearly the best wicket keeper batsman to have in the side.

03: 14 PM IST | 9 overs bowled, Sri Lanka 52/1; Gunathilaka 14(27), Kusal Mendis 1(3)

Gunathilaka takes charge after Dickwella’s departure, Lankans looking more comfortable than before, 2 boundaries in the 9th over. 11 runs of it. Bhuvneshwar-Bumrah continue the attack. Not at all a bad start for Sri Lanka, they have so far maintained a good run rate also their batsmen have shown relative ease today playing the Indian pacers.

Kusal Mendis in at number 3 for Lanka

03:05 PM IST | OUT! Dickwella c Dhawan b Bumrah 31(24) (7.4 overs) caught by Dhawan, what a tricky ball from Bumrah absolutely outplayed Dickwella who was looking in great touch. The right-handed pacer released it slowly, reducing a lot of pace and the Lankan had no room to hit. India gets the first one.

02: 52 PM IST | 5 overs bowled, Sri Lanka 28/0; Dickwella 20(12), Gunathilaka 8(18)

Looks like the similar script, just like the first game. Both Dickwella and Gunathilaka look in a good touch. 

02: 35  PM IST | 1 over bowled, Sri Lanka 2/0; Dickwella 1(3), Gunathilaka 1(3

A silent start to the first over of the game. Bhuvneshwar is keeping it tight, a good sign as compared to his last outing. Dickwella survived a scare as he edges past the leg stump while attempting to drive the away swinging good length ball.

02: 30 PM IST | Both the Lankan bowlers are Dickwella and Gunathilaka are at the crease. Dickwella is on strike. Bhuvneshwar will open the attack for India

02: 20 PMK IST | TOSS! Indian Captain Virat Kohli has won the toss and decided to bowl first.