Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 23 July 2019

Virat Kohli 'amazed' after India sweep ODI cricket series against Sri Lanka

Captain scores 30th century as tourists chase down 239-run target to crush Sri Lanka 5-0 in series. They also swept Test series 3-0.

India captain Virat Kohli celebrates his 30th century in one-day internationals. Dinuka Liyanawatte / Reuters
India captain Virat Kohli celebrates his 30th century in one-day internationals. Dinuka Liyanawatte / Reuters

Virat Kohli hit his second century in a row as India thrashed Sri Lanka by six wickets in the fifth one-day international on Sunday to inflict a humiliating 5-0 series defeat on the beleaguered hosts.

Kohli smashed nine fours in his unbeaten 110-run knock to help the visitors achieve the target of 239 with 21 balls to spare at the R Premadasa stadium in Colombo.

The series win came after India swept the preceding three-Test rubber 3-0, capping their domination of the home side which has been beset by injury and selection woes.

This was India's second 5-0 whitewash in an away ODI series with Kohli's men having blanked Zimbabwe in 2013.

Sri Lanka squandered the opportunity to salvage some pride, folding up for a below-par 238 in 49.4 overs after paceman Bhuvneshwar Kumar grabbed a career-best 5-42.

"It's quite amazing to have won the series 5-0. We always thought the shorter format is going to be much more challenging," Kohli said. "The youngsters and the spunk on the field has worked for us. All round, it's been a complete series for us. We've been playing some good cricket."

The Indians had a shaky start but Kohli anchored the innings with a 99-run partnership with Manish Pandey (36) for the third wicket.

He also put on 109 runs with Kedar Jadhav who scored a fine 63 off 73 balls.

Kohli, 28, looked in sublime form, hitting Milinda Siriwardana for three fours in an over to bring up his half-century.

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The right-hander went on to complete his 30th ODI century, equalling former Australian captain Ricky Ponting's tally.

Only Indian hero Sachin Tendulkar has scored more centuries in the 50-over game with 49 tons.

Earlier, Bhuvneshwar made the most of the conditions, reducing Sri Lanka to 40-2 before Lahiru Thirimanne (67) and Angelo Mathews stitched together a 122-run stand for the fourth wicket to steady the innings.

The dismissal of the two set batsmen triggered a collapse that saw the hosts lose seven wickets for 53 runs.

"It is a very difficult time for us. We were not up to the standard," Sri Lanka captain Upul Tharanga said.

"We lost a few early wickets. Thirimanne and Mathews had a good partnership. At one stage we were looking at 260-270. Unfortunately we collapsed again.

"We have to improve all three departments, especially our batting. We couldn't get those big scores in all five games. We lost a few main players, but still as a captain I feel we didn't play to our standard."

Mathews gave an easy catch to wicketkeeper MS Dhoni off spinner Kuldeep Yadav (1-40) after making 55 off 98 deliveries.

Thirimanne, who hit three fours and a six in his 102-ball knock, was bowled by Bhuvneshwar, the man of the match.

Dhoni passed a career milestone when he stumped Akila Dananjaya (4) off the bowling of leg-spinner Yuzvendra Chahal, his 100th in ODIs.

Dhoni became the first to achieve the feat, surpassing former Sri Lanka wicketkeeper Kumar Sangakkara who had 99 stumpings to his credit.

Updated: September 3, 2017 10:15 PM



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