Earlier, batting first after losing the toss, India posted a competitive 164 for 5 on the board. Suryakumar Yadav once again impressed with a 34-ball 50 while skipper Shikhar Dhawan contributed 46 in 36. A cameo of 20 not out off 14 from Ishan Kishan lifted India past 160, which proved more than enough in the end.
Speaking after winning the man of the match, Kumar said he was happy to do the job for the team. He stated at the post-match conference, “I executed what I wanted to and I am satisfied. I played ODIs after a long time but execution is really important for me.” Kumar added that the wicket was difficult to bat against the spinners.
Winnings skipper Dhawan admitted that India were 10-15 runs short but added that the bowlers, including debutant Varun Chakravarthy, did a fantastic job. Dhawan praised Suryakumar’s knock and said, “I thought we were 10-15 runs short. I feel we played quite well after losing early wickets. It was about one or two boundaries, we knew we could get going. He (SKY) is a great player and we enjoy watching him bat. He took the pressure from me and the way he plays calculated shots was amazing to watch.”
Praising India bowlers for successfully defending what seemed like an inadequate target, Dhawan added, “They (Sri Lanka) were playing well, we knew our spinners will do the job on that wicket. Bhuvi bowled well, so was KP. Everyone stood up and even Varun too playing his first match did well giving a few runs and got the wicket. He's (Varun) difficult to pick, I am very happy for him.”
Defending debutant Prithvi Shaw, who got out first ball, the Indian captain said, “Prithvi is playing well and he is going to bounce back stronger.”
Sri Lanka captain Dasun Shanaka felt that the target was achievable but they lost too many wickets. He said, “164 was chaseable on this wicket. Bowlers up front started well but our batsmen faltered. Asalanka and Bandara's wicket was the turning point for us. I thought our bowlers did an amazing job on this wicket. I hope boys come out and deliver for us. I am proud of the debutants today.”
With the win, India go 1-0 up in the three-match T20I series.
--By A Cricket Correspondent