Jadeja stars in India’s win over SL

Mohali, March 6 : India handed out a towering defeat by an innings and 222 runs to Sri Lanka, riding on spin duo Ravindra Jadeja and Ravichandran Ashwin’s magical show on Day 3 of the opening Test here on Sunday. With this win, Rohit Sharma became the second Indian captain to win his maiden Test incharge by an innings after Polly Umrigar’s India beat New Zealand by an innings and 27 runs at Brabourne Stadium in 1955-56 series. Sri Lanka surrendered to India as they lost 16 wickets without applying themselves and taking positives out of the game. In comparison, India had the privilege of four 50 plus scores and a staggering unbeaten century by Jadeja in India’s first innings. Except Pathum Nissanka and Niroshan Dickwella, who made handy contributions, none of the Sri Lankan batsmen flourished. For India, it was clearly Jadeja’s Test match as he played an extraordinary role to help India post a massive first innings total of 574 for 8 declared and then scripting Sri Lanka collapse in the morning session. The Saurashtrian picked up five wickets in Sri Lanka’s first innings and then four in the second. A five-fer in the second would have made him the only cricketer in Test history to have scored 150 plus runs and taken 10 wickets in a Test match. After smashing a career-best 175 not out on Saturday, Jadeja put Sri Lanka on the mat in their first innings by picking up 5 wickets as the visitors were skittled out for 174, prompting skipper Rohit Sharma to enforce a follow-on. With tails up with a massive 400 runs lead, off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin wrecked the confidence of Sri Lanka by sending back Lahiru Thirimanne (0) and Pathum Nissanka (6), who top-scored in the first innings with an unbeaten 61. Captain Dimuth Karunaratne fell for 27 to pacer Mohammad Shami and Dhananjay de Silva for 30 to Jadeja, as they tried to steady the innings after losing three wickets on the score of 45. Sri Lanka reached 120 for 4 in their second innings at tea, trailing by 280 runs with former skipper Angelo Mathews and Charith Asalanka at the crease. Post tea, Ashwin went past great Kapil Dev by becoming India’s second highest wicket taker in Tests after legendary leg-spinner Anil Kumble. Asalanka became his 435th wicket as he raced past Kapil’s 434 wickets. The slide did not stop at that. Mathews was squared up by Jadeja’s big turner and was caught plumb in front. He reviewed in vain and Sri Lanka were staring at an impending defeat. Jadeja got Suranga Lakmal in the same over, who tried to hit him out of the ground and was caught at mid-on by Jayant Yadav. He had his fourth victim after he went round the wicket to Lasith Embuldeniya who thick edged to Rishabh Pant behind the stumps, leaving Sri Lanka at 153 for 8. Shami got Vishwa Fernando and an injured Lahiru Kumara to nip in and out. Ultimetaley one of the incoming balls beat Fernando and trapped him plumb in front even as the review did not save him. Earlier, Hanuma Vihari, the new No 3 batsman, scored a fifty and Pant put up a belligerent performance with the bat. Virat Kohli reached 8000 Test runs in his landmark 100th Test. India went up 1-0 in two Test match series. The second Test will be a day and night affair which will kickstart from March 12 at Chinnaswamy stadium in Bengaluru. BDN RNJ

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