Kolkata: Even though there were moments in the game where Sri Lanka would have thought that they have the upper hand, in the end, it was a rather convincing win for India in the second ODI at the Eden Gardens in Kolkata on Thursday (January 12, 2023). After the visitors won the toss in the IND vs SL 2nd ODI and elected to bat first they got themselves into a pretty good position at one stage, having crossed the 100-run mark with just 1 wicket down.
However, in the end, the Indian bowlers made a pretty good comeback in the IND vs SL 2nd ODI as the Indian Cricket Team bundled out the opposition for 215. The Dasun Shanaka-led team did not have the answer to the questions posed by left-arm leg-spinner Kuldeep Yadav who finished with figures of 3 for 51, picking up the wickets of Kusal Mendis, Charith Asalanka and the Sri Lankan skipper Dasun Shanaka.
Mohammed Siraj too ended up with a 3-wicket haul (3/30) while Umran Malik and Axar Patel also found their name among the wicket-takers. Apart from debutant Nuwanidu Fernando, whose innings of 50 off 63 balls was studded with 6 boundaries, not many other batters could put their hand up when their team lost wickets in the middle. Mendis (34) and Dunith Wellalage (32) were the other significant contributors with the bat.
In response, India’s Rohit Sharma (17) and Shubman Gill (21) got the Men in Blue off to a brisk start at a ground where Rohit tends to love batting- the Eden Gardens Stadium. However, the Sri Lankan soon spoiled India’s party as they removed the top 3 in quick succession. Rohit Sharma fell prey to Chamika Karunaratne while Shubman Gill and Virat Kohli (4) were dismissed by Lahiru Kumara.
A hint of a partnership between KL Rahul and Shreyas Iyer seemed to have steadied the ship for India but Shreyas took the long walk back after scoring 28 runs with Kasun Rajitha getting his wicket. It was then that the hosts once again looked in a spot of bother. However, Hardik Pandya, who went wicktetless with the ball, joined hands with Rahul to pull the team out of a tricky situation.
The duo added 75 runs for the 5th wicket and by the time the Gujarat Titans skipper was dismissed in the 35th over for an individual score of 36, the target seemed within reach with a well-set batter in Rahul and a handy batting option in Axar Patel out there with 55 more runs to get.
Even though Axar was removed by the off-spinner Dhananjaya de Silva, Rahul went back only after finishing the job for India and en-route completed a fine half-century, remaining unbeaten on 64. A win at the Eden Gardens means India have bagged the three-match series with a match to go, having already beaten Sri Lanka in the series opener in Guwahati by 67 runs. The third ODI between the two teams will be played on Sunday, January 15 at the Greenfield International Stadium in Thiruvananthapuram.
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