In a knock which will certainly make a case for his inclusion in India’s T20 World Cup squad, Chahar, whose top ODI score was 12 before Tuesday, slammed 69 not out (82b, 7×4, 1×6) batting at No. 8 to help India chase down 276 in the final over and pull off an unlikely three-wicket win over Sri Lanka in the second ODI at the Premadasa Stadium. As expected, the visitors sealed the series, with the final game on Friday now of academic interest.
Having been reduced to 193 for seven in the 36th over, India looked to be losing the game, before Chahar added 84 for the eighth wicket in 87 balls with Bhuvneshwar Kumar (19 not out, 28b, 2×4) to get victory from a hopeless position. Towards the closing stages, Chahar was hit by cramps, but the Rajasthan bowler, who took two wickets with his knuckle balls earlier in the day, didn’t let that stop him from taking his team home, as he smashed Kasun Rajitha for a four to mid-wicket off the first ball of the last over. Realising that India just needed someone to stay at the wicket, Chahar batted with a wise head, not taking any unwarranted risk.
WHAT. A. NIGHT 👏 👏#TeamIndia #SLvIND https://t.co/o6Fvn2CrKD
— BCCI (@BCCI) 1626810823000
Before Chahar’s heroics, India’s charge was kept alive by Suryakumar Yadav (53, 44b, 6×4) – who scored his maiden half-century in his second ODI – and Manish Pandey (37, 31b, 3×4), who was unlucky to be run out at the non-striker’s end as the ball ricocheted off Sri Lankan skipper Dashun Shanaka’s hands.
While Sri Lanka put in a spirited show, their misery continued. It was India’s ninth consecutive win in a bilateral series over the hosts.
That was some performance by team India. Solid grit shown right through @bcci
— Rohit Sharma (@ImRo45) 1626807785000
A well-deserved Man of the Match award for @deepak_chahar9 for his unbeaten knock of 69 and take #TeamIndia past t… https://t.co/JndiSRm2jF
— BCCI (@BCCI) 1626805948000
Earlier, Charith Asalanka (65, 68b, 6×4) and Avishka Fernando (50, 71b, 4×4, 1×6) hit half-centuries, while for the second consecutive time, Chamika Karunaratne (44 not out, 33b, 5×4), batting at No 8, produced a brilliant cameo to help Sri Lanka score 275 for nine in 50 overs.
When #TeamIndia in Durham cheered for #TeamIndia in Colombo. From dressing room, dining room and on the bus, not… https://t.co/VGEx4KQXzi
— BCCI (@BCCI) 1626807326000
Defending the total against an in-form Indian batting line-up, Lanka thrived on the fingers of leg-spinner Wanindu Hasaranga, who took the key wickets of Prithivi Shaw (13), skipper Shikhar Dhawan (29) and Krunal Pandya (35, 54b, 3×4). The hosts’ gamble of introducing Hasaranga in just the third over paid off handsomely as Shaw (13), looking dangerous again, was castled while going for an expansive drive. Hasaranga later trapped Dhawan (29) lbw before taking his third wicket in the 36th over, cleaning Krunal’s stumps with a beauty.
Definitely a day to cherish 🇮🇳🇮🇳 Proud of each and every member of this team 💪 https://t.co/NnrHHZsPLs
— Yuzvendra Chahal (@yuzi_chahal) 1626804977000
India’s hero in the last game, ‘keeper-bat Ishan Kishan was out for just one this time, inside-edging a ball onto his stumps while trying to smash Rajitha on the off-side. Allrounder Hardik Pandya spooned Shanaka to mid wicket for a two-ball duck. Shaw took three consecutive fours off Rajitha in the first two overs— two superb straight drives followed by a typical flick to midwicket, but lost his wicket while trying to be too adventurous.
What a special win🇮🇳♥️The grit and composure you displayed today was unbelievable @deepak_chahar9 🙌🏻 https://t.co/Kv37hwdMEj
— Surya Kumar Yadav (@surya_14kumar) 1626805499000
On a rare day for Indian cricket when two Indian teams were playing in two different parts of the world on the same day for perhaps the first time ever, leg-spinner Yuzuvendra Chahal and seamer Bhvneshwar took three wickets each.
After openers Minod Bhanuka (36, 42b, 6×4) and Fernando (50, 71b, 4×4, 1×6) gave Sri Lanka an excellent 77-run start in 80 balls, Chahal struck twice in two balls in the 14th over.