Virat Kohli displayed utmost ruthlessness in both captaincy and batsmanship as India won the ODI series with clean sweep Vs Sri Lanka with six-wicket victory in the final ODI of the series, on Sunday. India have now completed back-to-back rout after humiliating the hosts in the three-Test series, which was also a complete route.
After Bhuvneshwar Kumar’s maiden 5-wicket haul enabled India to restrict Sri Lanka to a below-par 238, Kohli for the umpteenth time anchored a successful chase in 46.3 overs with a fluent unbeaten 110. This was his 30th ODI hundred in his only 194th game and is now jointly second highest in list of century makers alongside Ricky Ponting with only Sachin Tendulkar (49 hundreds) ahead of him.
The only people to miss out were comeback man Ajinkya Rahane (5), who was dismissed trying to hook a Malinga bouncer while Rohit Sharma’s lap shot off a Vishwa Fernando delivery was brilliantly caught at fine leg by Malinda Pushpakumara.
Sri Lankan batting once again promised a lot but delivered too little as seven wickets for 53 runs after they were cruising along at 185 for 3. A 122-run partnership for the 4th wicket between Lahiru Thirimanne (67) and Angelo Mathews (55) enabled Sri Lanka to reach a position of safety before Bhuvneshwar led the charge with his maiden five-wicket haul. Jasprit Bumrah (2/45), Kuldeep Yadav (1/40) and Yuzvendra Chahal (1/36) were the other wicket-takers.
It was a familiar story for Sri Lanka as the scoreboard read 64/3 after the first powerplay. Thirimanne and Mathews though defied Indian bowling for 29.3 overs as they put on the hosts’ highest stand throughout this five-match series.
Dhoni was in business again when he stumped Akila Dananjaya (4) in the 43rd over off Yuzvendra Chahal (1-36). In doing so he became the first wicket keeper to notch up 100 stumpings in ODI cricket, moving one ahead of Kumar Sangakkara who has 99 stumpings.
Wickets came in a flurry then, as Bhuvneshwar returned to complete his five-wicket haul. They hosts failed to cross 250 even once during this 5-match series, even as Bumrah with 15 wickets in this contest earned the record for most wickets in a bilateral series with five ODIs.