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India vs Sri Lanka 2017, Pallekele Test: Team India's Report Card

Cricketnext Staff | Updated: August 15, 2017, 1:51 PM IST
India vs Sri Lanka 2017, Pallekele Test: Team India's Report Card

After picking 4 wickets in the first essay, Kuldeep Yadav picked one in the second innings. (AP Image)

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New Delhi: India completed a comprehensive series whitewash over Sri Lanka as they thumped the hosts by an innings and 171 runs in the third and final Test, which ended in under three days. Ravichandran Ashwin was the destroyer-in-chief in the second innings, picking up four wickets, while the pace duo of Mohammed Shami (3 wickets) and Umesh Yadav (2 wickets) did their bit to bring the curtains down on Sri Lanka's misery early.

Here is Cricketnext's report card as we analyse the performance of every Indian player from the match.

Shikhar Dhawan: Rating 9, Verdict: Excellent

Opener Shikhar Dhawan once again showed that he can be equally destructive in the longest format of the game as he is in the limited-over format for India. The southpaw hit a blistering 123-ball 119 to help India set a total of 487 runs in the first innings, which set the tone for the rest of the match.

Dhawan was also awarded the man of the series award as he was India's top-scorer with 358 runs, that included two centuries.


KL Rahul: Rating 8, Verdict: Very Good

KL Rahul played an equally important role in helping India post a massive total in the first innings of the Test. Rahul struck a majestic half-century and also put on a brilliant 188-run opening partnership with Dhawan to pile on the misery on the hosts.

Rahul also joined an elite list when he reached the half-century mark as he equalled the world record of getting a fifty plus score in seven successive innings under his belt.


Cheteshwar Pujara: Rating 4, Verdict: Average

After slamming two centuries in first two matches, Pujara had a very quiet outing in the Pallekele Test. The right-hander couldn't get into double figures in the only innings that India batted in and was dismissed for just eight runs.

Even while fielding, just one catch came his way in the second innings, which he managed to pluck with great ease.


Virat Kohli: Rating 6, Verdict: Good

Virat Kohli once again failed to lit up the match with his bat as he could muster just 42 runs in the first innings. Meanwhile, Kohli's dismissal came at the wrong time for the visitors as after a great start to the innings, wickets started to fall in a heap.

But as the leader of the side, Kohli made some brilliant decisions in the field that broke the backbone of hosts' batting. For example, in Sri Lanka's first innings, Kohli persisted with Kuldeep Yadav when he was going for boundaries and the Chinaman repaid the faith with a scintillating four-wicket haul.


Ajinkya Rahane: Rating 4, Verdict: Average

Ajinkya Rahane failed to grab the golden opportunity which presented itself in the first innings. Rahane had all the time in the world to steady the Indian ship and go onto to slam a big innings. However, Rahane once again was found wanting against the spinners and he was castled by Pushpakumara for just 17.


Wriddhiman Saha: Rating 5, Verdict: Average

Wriddhiman Saha tried his best to stitch a good partnership on the second day of the Test but he could muster just 16 runs in the first innings. Saha won't be happy with his dismissal in this match as he hit a poor delivery outside the off-stump straight into the hands of the gully fielder.

However, his glouves-work once again illustrated why he is regarded as the best Indian wicket-keeper at the moment in the longest format of the game. Saha ended the match with four smart catches and also one stumping.


Hardik Pandya: Rating 9, Verdict: Excellent

In the last one year, Hardik Pandya has become a mainstay in the limited-overs format for India. And after his scintillating show in this series, the all-rounder has indicated that he has the temperament to play in the longest format of the game as well.

Pandya slammed his maiden Test century in stunning style that really took the match away from the hosts. The Lankans came back into the match by taking quick wickets late in the first day. However, Pandya's blitzkrieg on the day ensured that the hosts were on the back-foot yet again. Not to forget the 26 runs (4,4,6,6,6,0) off Pushpakumara's over in the first innings, which is now an record for most runs scored by an Indian in one over in Tests.

With the ball too, Pandya was effective in the Lanka's first innings as he picked up the crucial wicket of Angelo Mathews.


R Ashwin: Rating 8, Verdict: Very Good

Ravichandran Ashwin has been performing with both bat and ball for India for a long time now. Ashwin once again chipped in with a handy 31 in the first innings when the visitors were in need of some crucial runs down the order.

However, it was with the ball in hand that the tweaker did most of the damage. Ashwin picked two and four wickets respectively in each innings that helped India complete a comprehensive win in the last Test.


Kuldeep Yadav: Rating 8, Verdict: Very Good

Young Chinaman Kuldeep Yadav was given the task of filling in the huge boots of suspended all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja and boy did he shine like a little superstar in this match. Kuldeep first formed a brilliant 62-run stand with Hardik Pandya to help take the visitors' score past the 400 run mark.

Later, he picked up a four-wicket haul in the first innings that helped in dismissing the hosts for a meager 135. Kuldeep also picked up one wicket in the second innings as well.


Mohammed Shami: Rating 8, Verdict: Very Good

Virat Kohli believes that Mohammed Shami is amongst the top three pacers in the world at the moment. And his performance in the final Test justifies this tag by his skipper.

In Lanka's first innings, Shami dismissed both their openers — Upul Tharanaga and Dimuth Karunaratne — in a span of just few overs to leave their challenge in tatters. While in the second innings, Shami's target were the middle order batsmen as he sent packing the likes of Malinda Pushpakumara, Kusal Mendis and Lakshan Sandakan to complete a five-wicket haul in the match.


Umesh Yadav: Rating 7, Verdict: Good

Like Shami, Umesh Yadav too gave his all on this tough wicket in Pallekele. Umesh bowled admirably in both the innings and ended the match with two wickets. The low count of wickets doesn't say the entire story as Umesh helped in creating a lot of pressure on the hosts' batsmen. In Umesh's defence, he under-bowled by Kohli as well as the pacer bowled just 3.1 overs in the first innings.
First Published: August 15, 2017, 1:50 PM IST
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