Hosts beat Islanders by 93 runs to go 1-0 up in three-match series
Leg-spinner Yuzvendra Chahal produced another brilliant spell and KL Rahul played a responsible knock to help India beat Sri Lanka by 93 runs in the first T20I to go 1-0 up in Cuttack on Wednesday.
The day started with Sri Lankan captain Thisara Perera winning the toss and deciding to bowl first. His decision, however, backfired drastically as the home side posted mammoth 180 for the loss of three wickets in their allotted 20 overs.The star of the show was young Rahul, who in the absence of senior pros like Virat Kohli, Shikhar Dhawan and Ajikya Rahane, contributed with a responsible knock of 61 off 48 with the help of seven fours and one six.
Former captain and wicketkeeper-batsman Mahendra Singh Dhoni and young Manish Pandey also made valuable contributions in the later stages of the innings with 39 and 32 off 22 and 18 balls respectively.
For Sri Lanka, veteran all-rounder Angelo Mathews, captain Perera and pacer Nuwan Pradeep claimed one wicket each.Chasing 181 was always going to be tough, but Sri Lanka made a solid start and was going well until the fifth over.
However, once Upul Tharanga got out, it opened the floodgates for the home side who made full use of it as the visitors bowled out for just 87 in the 16th over.Only four batsmen out of the Sri Lankan team managed to enter into double figures. Tharanga finished the innings with the top score of 23 off 16 balls with the help of one four and two sixes.
For India, Yuzvendra Chahal named the man of the match for his superlative performance with the ball. The second T20 game will be played at Holkar Cricket Stadium, Indore.